Photo: Michael Wong
PASADENA (Sept. 26, 2017) – Caltech Volleyball looked as good as they have in any SCIAC match this season when the Beavers took on visiting Occidental College on Tuesday evening. So good in fact, they tallied the most total points (58) and digs (73) in a SCIAC match during Head Coach Tom Gardner's three years with the team.
Sophomore Alexa Lauinger (Ortonville, Mich. / Brandon) led the Caltech charge with 16 digs and nine kills, one kill away from matching freshman Krystyna Maruszko's (Redondo Beach, Calif. / Marymount) total in the Beavers last home game against Chapman Universty. Maruszko coincidentally also had 16 digs and led the Beavers with 10 asssists. Sophomore Ellie Walker (Minneapolis, Minn. / Blake School) had nine assists of her own and junior Sakthi Vetrivel (Redmond, Wash. / Overlake School) got in on the Beavers' attacking game with eight kills.
Caltech's total dig count illustrates how close its three sets against Oxy really were. The Beavers pushed the Tigers to 13-all in the first set but had their best success in a second set in which they looked poised to seize. This time, the Beavers had a lead as late and signficant as 20-14 over the rival Tigers, though the Tigers would go on to have an 11-2 run to steal the set. A Vetrivel kill helped break up what initially began as a 5-0 run in favor of Oxy. The third set proved to be a different story than even the first two. Trailing the Tigers 16-6, the Beavers managed to grind out 12 more points and finish the match on a positive 12-9 run in which they fended off three match points.
Gardner and the Beavers will look for their first SCIAC win when they travel down the road to Whittier College on Friday for a 7:00 p.m. match.