PASADENA, Calif. (Oct. 31, 2014) – An inspired start and a season-high 12 total blocks saw the Caltech volleyball team nearly take the opening set as the Beavers hosted SCIAC foe Pomona-Pitzer Colleges on Halloween Friday night.
The Sagehens overcame the hot start to leave with the 3-0 victory and improve to 18-9 overall and 10-5 in the SCIAC, while the Beavers are now 1-21 (0-15).
The Beavers played arguably their best set of the season to open the match, taking six more points than in any set in the teams' previous matchup and their second-highest total against any conference opponent this season. With junior Amy Hu (Rockville, Md. / Montgomery Blair) serving, junior Meghana Pagadala (Rock Island, Ill. / Rivermont Collegiate) notched the first point on a well-placed kill and immediately afterward combined with junior Amarise Little (Orlando, Fla. / Freedom) on a block for the 2-0 lead. Another block shortly after by Little and sophomore Suzannah Osekowsky (Saratoga, Calif. / Saratoga) kept the margin at two. Pomona-Pitzer took a brief lead at 6-4, but Caltech tied it up at 6-6 as junior Catherine Jamshidi (Burke, Va. / Braddock Secondary School) got in on a pair of blocks.
Pomona-Pitzer used the momentum to surge ahead to a 10-0 lead to start the second set and built the margin as high as 16-1 before the Beavers could muster some offense, smacking a pair of kills but still falling 25-4 as the Sagehens did not commit a single attack error. A trio of kills by Jamshidi in the third set were not enough for the Beavers as the Sagehens took the match with a 25-10 win.
The Caltech blockers were not caught off guard by Pomona-Pitzer's spread-it-around offense, besting the previous season high of 10 blocks with 12 total blocks. Jamshidi led the way with four and added six kills and eight digs, while Little and senior Connie Hsueh (Pacifica, Calif. / Henry M. Gunn) each recorded three. Junior Harinee Maiyuran (Irvine, Calif. / Arnold O. Beckman) and Hu made 13 assists as Pagadala and sophoomore Alison Lui (Osprey, Fla. / Pine View) tallied three kills apiece, with Lui's marking a season high on a team-best .333 hitting percentage.
Head Coach Tom Gardner and the Beavers will face SCIAC rival Occidental College (5-20, 3-12) in their final road match of the season on Saturday, Nov. 1 at 4 p.m. The game will be available online via Live stats and video broadcast, both of which can be accessed through the team's schedule page at gocaltech.com