UCSD Volleyball Earns Fifth Straight Win

    Into the first set, UCSD fell 21-25, but bounced back with a dominant performance in the sets to come. In the second set, Chico suffered from 14 service and attack errors giving UCSD an edge to close out the set with a score of 25-18. Early in the third set, sophomore Amber Hawthorne delivered two service aces to spark a 15-point Triton rally to top Chico 25-12. The Tritons closed out the game with a last set score of 25-16, improving their record to 4-1.

    Defensively, UCSD had a great game at the net, with nine blocking assists from sophomore Lauren Demos and four apiece from freshman Sheridan Taylor and sophomore Amber Hawthorne. Together, UCSD combined for 13 total team blocks to Chico’s two.

    Hawthorne controlled the tempo of the Triton offense with 40 assists. UCSD totaled 45 kills, a number of which were from sophomore Sara McCutchan, who had 13, and freshman Danielle Dahle, who led UCSD once again with 14 kills. Freshman Sophie Rowe also had a solid performance leading UCSD in the third set to a 10-point run against the Wildcats. Rowe had seven kills and nine digs in the three sets she played where UCSD bested Chico.

    The following night, on Sept. 27, UCSD defeated Cal State Stanislaus (1-5) in three sets.

    Stanislaus took an early lead in the first set, but UCSD soon found pace and rallied back, led by underclassmen Rowe and Dahle. The Tritons took the win with scores of 25-22, 25-10, and 25-21.

    Highlights on the offensive side include 14 more kills from Dahle. Defensively, Demos, McCutchan and Taylor had three blocks each, while freshman libero Katy Woodward and Sophie Rowe tallied 21 digs each.

    After failing to win in their conference debut against Dominguez Hills, volleyball has won five consecutive games to put the team in a running for first place in the Central Coast Athletic Association.

    “Our win streak is great. It’s definitely firing the team up to perform this weekend as we travel to Sonoma and San Francisco State,” Hawthorne said in an email interview. “The way we have been playing recently has been very impressive, but not surprising.”

    The Tritons have proven themselves a talented group of underclassmen that have gone through the gauntlet.

    “We may be a young squad, but we have a lot of talent that is setting us up for a successful season,” Hawthorne said. “As long as we continue the hard work and focus every time we are on the court, I think we will be the team to beat this year.”

    Next week, on Oct. 5, UCSD heads north to take on No. 24 Sonoma State. The Tritons will also face San Francisco State who are in a four-way tie with UCSD, Sonoma State, and Cal State San Bernardino for the top rank in the CCAA.

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