ANCHORAGE, Alaska – The 10th-ranked Western Washington University volleyball team opened play in the D2 West Region Volleyball Showcase with a 3-0 loss (25-14, 25-21, 25-18) against 24th-ranked California Baptist Thursday afternoon at the Alaska Airlines Center.
The Vikings (3-2) were forced to play from behind in nearly every set as California Baptist improved to 4-0 on the season. The Lancers avenged their season-ending 3-0 loss to the Vikings in the opening round of the 2016 NCAA II West Regional in Anchorage.
“I am disappointed in how we approached this match, but that falls into the category of a learning lesson,” said 18th-year head coach Diane Flick-Williams. “We are looking to elevate for tomorrow’s matches.”
WWU junior outside hitter Abby Phelps (Manson, WA/Chelan) led the Vikings with 9 kills and 13 digs. Overall the Vikings hit a season-low .145 and committed 15 hitting errors.
California Baptist had three players reach double-figures in kills, led by 13 from reigning PacWest Player of the Week Lauren Hackett. Sydney Marks and McKenna Witt added 11 kills apiece for CBU.
The Vikings dropped the opening set 25-14. With the game knotted 5-5, Cal Baptist pulled ahead going on a 7-1 run to take a 12-6 lead. Western chipped away at the deficit and pulled to within four at 16-12, but CBU responded with a 4-1 run to lead 20-13, and finished the set on a 9-2 run to win 25-14. Western had a .000 hitting percentage in the opening set (7 kills, 7 errors).
The Lancers took the second set 25-21 to go up 2-0. CBU led for most of the set, but the Vikings pulled to within one point at 16-15. Cal Baptist came out of a timeout going on a 5-1 run to grab a 21-16 lead. The Vikings made one last rally to pull close at 22-20, but CBU pulled away to go up 2-0.
Cal Baptist clinched the sweep with a 25-18 win in the third set. WWU held a three-point lead at 12-9, but CBU came out of its timeout going on a 4-0 run to take a 13-12 lead. The Lancers again used a late rally to seal the victory, scoring seven of the last eight points in the set.
The Vikings return to action on Friday with two matches during the second day of the D2 West Region Volleyball Showcase facing a pair of ranked opponents, No. 11 Cal State San Bernardino (11 am PT/10 am AKT) and No. 15 Concordia-Irvine (6:30 pm PT/5:30 pm AKT). WWU closes out the tournament on Saturday facing Chico State (4:30 pm PT/3:30 pm AKT). All games can be streamed and followed via live stats at GNAC.tv.
Volleyball 2017 Season in Review
Vikings finished the season ranked No. 7 in the nation going 27-4 and winning GNAC Championship
Abby Phelps Named First Team AVCA All-American
Phelps earns First Team honor, while Brette Boesel and Joellee Buckner named Honorable Mention
Vikings Fall in West Regional Final to Cal State San Bernardino
WWU has 20-match winning streak snapped in 3-0 loss to finish season 27-4
Championship Saturday! Vikings to Play for West Regional Title
WWU Volleyball takes 20-match winning streak into regional final vs. Cal State San Bernardino
Vikings Advance to West Regional Final With 3-1 Win over NNU
Vikings will play in NCAA II West Regional Championship match for the third consecutive season facing Cal State San Bernardino at 7 pm...
Vikings Take On NNU In NCAA West Regional Semifinal
WWU is coming off 3-1 victory over Alaska Anchorage
Volleyball Advances in NCAA Tourney With 3-1 Win Over UAA
Junior outside hitter Abby Phelps records a career-high 28 kills with a .347 hitting percentage to lead WWU
Three Vikings Named AVCA All-West Region
Brette Boesel and Abby Phelps named First Team All-West Region. Joellee Buckner named honorable mention
Boesel and Phelps Named D2CCA First Team All-Region
The Vikings lead the region with two first-team selections in Boesel and Phelps
Volleyball Heads to Sixth Consecutive NCAA Championships
Vikings are ranked No. 5 in the nation and take 18-match winning streak into postseason
Vikings Dominate All-GNAC Volleyball Team
Abby Phelps named GNAC Player of the Year to lead five WWU selections to All-GNAC team
Vikings Announced as No. 2 Seed in NCAA II Championships West Regional
WWU will take 18-match winning streak up against GNAC rival Alaska Anchorage in the first round on Nov. 30
Phelps and Hall Sweep GNAC Volleyball Awards
Abby Phelps named GNAC Co-Offensive Player of the Week and Michaela Hall earns defensive award
Winning Streak Reaches 18 Straight for the Vikings
WWU ends regular season with 3-0 sweep over Central Washington on Senior Night
Vikings Clinch GNAC Championship with Sweep over NNU
Vikings clinch eighth GNAC title with 25-22, 25-21, 25-19 victory over No. 13 Northwest Nazarene