PORTLAND, Ore. - The Lewis & Clark volleyball team rallied back from two sets down to defeat the Whitman Missionaries 3-2 on Saturday night in Northwest Conference action. The Missionaries took the first two sets 25-19 and 25-12 before the Pioneers came surging back 25-21, 25-17 and 15-13.
The win is the Pioneers second consecutive NWC win, putting them 6-9 on the season and 2-4 in conference play. The Missionaries slip to 4-9 overall and 2-4 in conference.
The Pioneers ended the night with four players in double digits in kills, with Kateleya Milan leading the way with 15. Jennifer Dowdy was close behind with 14, while Alicia Callejo-Black finished with 12 and Brigitte Russo knocked down 10. Leia Matsunaga had another great night dishing out the ball, picking up 44 assists.
Callejo-Black was the teams defensive leader with six blocks (one solo / five assisted), while Russo denied the Missionaries five times (one solo / four assisted. Milan and Kayla Ernewein each blocked the Missionaries three times, while Matsunaga was credited with two blocks.
Jillian Davis had a match-high 18 kills for Whitman, while teammate Jazmine Moledina picked up 12. Rachel Cline and Taylor Aschenbrenner shared the duty of dishing out to their hitters, with Cline earning 25 assists and Aschenbreener 20.
After dropping the second set to fall behind 2-0, the Pioneers opened the third set on a mission, quickly taking a 6-2 lead. Whitman fought back to tie the set at 11-11, but a series of errors allowed the Pioneers to once again recapture the lead. On their first set point, the Pioneers were unable to stop the Missionaries from putting the ball down to making it a 24-21 game. Dowdy handled the ball next set point, knocking down a screamer making it a 2-1 match.
Dowdy opened the fourth set with a kill to once again give Lewis & Clark an early lead. The Pioneers made quick work of the Missionaries in the fourth set, running up a strong 17-7 lead with solid put downs and unforced errors by Whitman, before closing the set out 25-17.
With everything on the line in the fifth set, the two sides battled for every point. Tied 10-10, a Missionary error handed the Pios their first lead and the team never looked back.
The Pioneers return to action on Friday, Oct. 5 at 7 p.m. at home against Willamette.