WALLA WALLA, Wash. -- The Lewis & Clark Pioneers entered Northwest Conference play with a 7-0 record but saw their winning streak end with a five-set loss to the Whitman Blues.
The Pioneers traded sets with the Blues winning the second and fourth sets to force a fifth and final set. The Pioneers fell behind 14-9 in the fifth set but rallied back to pull the game to within one. However, a service error by the Pioneers gave Whitman the 15-13 win in the fifth set and dropped Lewis & Clark to 0-1 in NWC play.
The Pioneers dropped the third set to the Blues bringing up a must-win situation in the fourth set to keep the game going. Whitman pulled ahead 4-0 in the fourth set but a kill and a subsequent service ace by freshman Kendall Malone got the Pioneers rolling. The two teams traded points in the fourth set until back-to-back service aces by senior Annika San Nicolas helped the Pioneers pull away. Another kill by Malone sealed the set for Lewis & Clark.
Lewis & Clark started out strong in the fifth set but struggled to stop Whitman senior Codie Conching who finished the match with 18 kills. The Pios found themselves down 14-9, facing a matchpoint for the Blues. A service error by Whitman's Tate Cadang halted the Blues momentum and subsequent errors by the Blues helped to pull the Pios to within one. However, a service error would end the Pioneer rally and their winning streak dropping them to 0-1 in conference play.
Senior Annika San Nicolas led the team in service aces with 3 and had 8 assists giving her over 100 career assists
Senior Mikayla Lopez led the Pioneers in assists with 25
Kourtney Meyer had 14 kills and is second in the NWC in kills per set (3.22)
Makena Ohlmaier surpassed 150 career kills
The Pioneers continue their road trip, facing off against Whitworth tomorrow at 6 p.m.