WWU stays patient in four-set win over Chico State
Sept. 8, 2012
ROHNERT PARK, Calif. - Marlayna Geary (Sr., Tacoma/Bellarmine Prep) and Jennica McPherson (R-Fr., Seattle/Kennedy) each had double-doubles in kills and digs as Western Washington University defeated Chico State, 25-14, 19-25, 25-20, 25-23 , Saturday at the Seawolf Spike Invitational Volleyball Tournament.
The Vikings, ranked No.18 in the latest American Volleyball Coaches Association NCAA Division II Coaches' Poll, improved to 6-1. They meet host and No.23-ranked Sonoma State in the tourney's last match tonight at 7 p.m. The loss was the first in seven matches this season for Chico State.
"It's always good to play a team like Chico State because they always play with high emotion and are digging a lot of balls, so it forces you to stay patient in order to beat them," said WWU head coach Diane Flick (13th year, 255-71).
"I think we did that toward the latter part of the match and I'm really proud of our players for keeping the game simple and coming up with the plays we needed to when they counted."
Geary finished with 16 kills and 12 digs and McPherson had 11 kills with a .429 hitting percentage and 12 digs.
Kayla Erickson (So., Gig Harbor/Peninsula) also had 11 kills for the Vikings and Emily Boerger (Jr., Marysville/Marysville-Pilchuck) added 10. Libero Samantha Hutchinson (So., University Place/Curtis) had 24 digs and setter Laurie Yearout (Sr., Spokane/Lewis & Clark) 48 assists, both match highs.
"We had great balance on offense," Flick said. "Again I think Laurie is doing a good job of getting everybody involved and making good choices."
In the first set, WWU scored five straight points for an 18-13 lead and stretched that out to a nine-point win. After dropping the second set, the Vikings took the third and fourth games, both hard-fought affairs, as Erickson had set winning kills in both.
The double-double was Geary's seventh in her last eight matches.
WWU began tourney play Friday, splitting a pair of matches. Following a loss to No.17 UC San Diego, 21-25, 15-25, 25-20, 25-21, 15-13, the Vikings swept Cal State Stanislaus, 25-13, 25-21, 25-21.
WWU, the preseason Great Northwest Athletic Conference preseason favorite, begins league play this weekend, entertaining Montana State Billings on Friday (7 p.m.) and defending champion Seattle Pacific on Saturday (7 p.m.).
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