Sports

Menlo College women turn suspense into volleyball victory

 
Sofie Salim recorded 15 kills in Menlo's four-set win over host Pacific Union. Photo courtesy of Menlo Athletics.

Sofia Salim collected 15 kills on a hitting percentage of .379 and the Menlo College women's volleyball team downed host Pacific Union, 24-26, 25-21, 25-15, 25-20, Wednesday in a nonconference match.

Sierra Buscher added 13 kills for the Oaks (15-6), who matched their win total from last year. Libero Hannah Hudson added 23 digs.


Bailey Gamez
Menlo returns to Golden State Athletic Conference play Saturday, Oct. 14 with a trip to Rocklin and a match with William Jessup at 2 p.m. The Oaks are in the midst of a five-match road trip. Their next home match is Oct. 27.

The first set produced nine lead changes and it was tied, incredibly, 18 times. The host Pioneers (3-7) managed to record three straight points after Menlo had taken a 24-23 edge on a kill from Buscher.

Pacific Union managed runs of four and three points during the set, the longest for either side of the court.

Menlo may have worn down the Pioneers, rallying to win the next sets with relative ease: one lead change and five ties.

The Oaks eventually built a 19-12 advantage before Pacific Union made things interesting and pulling within 22-20 before Menlo finished it off. Maggie McDonald put the Oaks at set point with a kill and a hitting error by the Pioneers ended it.

Menlo clearly dominated the third set but it wasn't as easy as it seemed. The set produced three lead changes and four ties, only taking a dramatic shift when the Pioneers couldn't seem to get out of their own way.

Pacific Union worked hard to establish a 7-4 lead before inexplicably committing eight errors over a 13-point span that put the Oaks comfortably ahead at 16-8.

The fourth set took an entirely different swing after the Pioneers opened a 10-4 lead. Menlo took matters into its own hands, recording five kills and a service ace to help win eight straight points and produce the lone lead change of the final set.

The Pioneers did keep it close until Menlo scored five of the final seven points.

The Oaks were effective at the net, with six different players in on eight team blocks. Emily Sunada filled the scoresheet with 12 points on seven kills (and a hitting percentage of .429), six block assists and a pair of aces.

Kenzie Carpenter added four block assists and six kills, Bailey Gamez netted nine points and McDonald eneded with eight.

Moea Kekauoha and Buscher combined for 25 digs and Monica Hruby and Jake Rockwood split 51 assists.

— Palo Alto Online Sports/Menlo Athletics

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