Vuls dominate hapless Holy Names
It’s nice to breathe easy on road
College volleyball seasons can turn into a grind, especially on road trips, and the drudgery only heightens when a team is playing for a fourth consecutive day.
So it’s nice when a team can get through its business quickly as UH-Hilo did Wednesday.
Downtrodden Holy Names was the perfect opponent considering the circumstances, and the Vulcans breezed to a 25-17, 25-15, 25-22 victory in Oakland for their third win in four nights and fourth in five matches overall.
The only loss during the span came in nonconfernce action Tuesday in three sets against Cal State East Bay, but UH-Hilo quickly bounced back against the winless Hawks, with Siera Green pounding 15 kills to help lift the Vulcans (8-8, 5-4 Pacific West) above .500 in conference play for the first time all season.
At .208, UH-Hilo managed to clear a .200 hitting percentage for the first time in seven matches thanks in large part to Green (.303), Kiley Davis (six kills, .357, four blocks) and Evelin Solyomvari (six, .364).
Setter Basia Sauni enjoyed a nice all-around effort with 22 assists, 14 digs and two aces.
There haven’t been many nice things to happen to Holy Names (0-17, 0-8) so far this season. The Hawks were swept for the 13th time – twice by the Vuls – and they’ve only managed to win four sets.
Sierra Allen led way with eight kills, but Holy Names only hit .020.
Green now has 61 kills on the road trip, including a career-high 23 on Monday, to help UH-Hilo reach to top half of the PacWest in a tie for sixth.
Before heading back to the Big Island, the Vulcans visit Fresno Pacific on Friday. The Sunbirds (7-10, 5-3) won in four sets Sept. 23 in Hilo.
Cross-country: On the path to the PacWest championships, the Vulcans appear to be on the upswing.
In their final tune-up last Saturday on Oahu, Anna Baker-Mikkelsen took her customary spot as the top UHH runner, finishing third at the HPA Invitational, and Beatriz Duarte was seventh, one spot ahead of Meghan Langbehn.
Baker-Mikkelsen finished the grass course in 20:14, 20 seconds better than she ran on the same course earlier this season at the Big Wave Invitational.
Duarte’s 20:37 was 31 seconds faster than the beginning of the season (21:08), Langbehn improved by eight seconds and Lizette Garcia was 46 seconds better.
Reyna Garcia Lopez pulled out before the race with what a school release called a “slight injury,” so the Vulcans did not compute a team score.
“Anna ran a good race, by herself most of the time,” head coach Jamie Guerpo said. “All four runners improved from the last time we were here a month ago, and that’s what we are looking for as we try to peak in two weeks at the conference championships.”
The final run is Oct. 21 in Belmont, Calif.