Redlands Women's Volleyball Drops Four-Setter to Cal Lutheran

Photo credit: Stephanie Schoppe
Photo credit: Stephanie Schoppe

The University of Redlands women's volleyball made the trek to Thousand Oaks on Friday night for a Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SCIAC) match against the Cal Lutheran University Regals.  After falling short in the first two sets, the Bulldogs rallied back to secure the third but ultimately lost in four sets, 22-25, 17-25, 25-22, 16-25.

The first set saw Redlands jump out to a 10-5 lead, with sophomore outside hitter Christina Casey (Sherwood, OR), sophomore outside hitter Melanie Fyda (Chicago, IL), sophomore middle hitter Sofia Olsson (Cupertino, CA), and freshman right-side hitter Savannah Casey (Encinitas, CA) each contributing kills.  Following a CLU timeout, the Bulldogs pushed forward to a 14-11 advantage, as freshman middle hitter Hannah Lanyon (San Diego, CA) added to the team's effective offense.

Unfortunately for the Maroon and Gray, the Regals started to find their own attacking rhythm at the net and quickly evened the tally at 14 and again at 15. 

A back-and-forth battle ensued, with a solo Lanyon block forcing a tie at 20 apiece.  Despite quality put-aways by Lanyon and sophomore right-side hitter Megan Houston (Normandy Park, WA), CLU edged the Bulldogs to take the opening set, 25-22.

During the second set, Redlands faced an early deficit and struggled to fully recover, as the Regals orchestrated scoring runs to stretch their lead.

With their backs against the wall, the Bulldogs responded in the third frame amidst a slightly revised rotation.  Redlands stormed out to a 3-1 lead, with Lanyon and Houston putting up a wall of a block before Fyda knocked the ball down for the kill. 

Although CLU answered to make it 5-3, the Bulldogs also responded with senior libero Abigail Hickman (Phoenix, AZ) at the service line.  The teams continued to trade scoring runs, with six knotted scores resulting.  At 21-all, freshman right-side hitter Marlena Ramanis (Walnut Creek, CA) and sophomore middle hitter Sammi Tafoya (Granite Bay, CA) shut down the Regal attack with a block to reenergize the Maroon and Gray at 22-21.  Following a CLU error and point, Fyda and Tafoya took care of the ball at the net with crafty kills to seal the deal at 25-22 and force a fourth set.

However, a late-set run by the Regals in the fourth frame eliminated the visitors' chances for a comeback.

Fyda, Houston, and Ramanis recorded eight kills apiece, while sophomore Emily Marty (Chula Vista, CA) distributed 20 assists. Hickman provided 26 digs, with Fyda adding 20.

Redlands (3-8, 1-5 SCIAC) takes a break from conference competition when it hosts UC Santa Cruz on Saturday, September 30, at 2 p.m. in Currier Gym.