Photo by Michael Wong
PASADENA, Calif. (Oct.11, 2015) – The Caltech volleyball team swept a doubleheader against Mills College by identical 3-0 scores on Sunday afternoon.
The Beavers recorded season highs in kills, digs, assists and aces in their first two victories of the season, improving to 2-14 overall.
Caltech 3, Mills 0
The Beavers came out on fire in the first set as they scored the first four points of the game, including two service aces by senior Meghana Pagadala (Rock Island, Ill. / Rivermont Collegiate). The Cyclones kept close until a kill by senior Cat Jamshidi (Burke, Va. / Lake Braddock Secondary School) led the Beavers to a six-point rally and eventual 25-18 victory.
The second set was a nail-biter right from the start. Mills shrugged off the first set to jump out to a 12-8 lead, but a kill by senior Amarise Little (Orlando, Fla. / Freedom) shifted the momentum in favor of the Beavers, who scored six unanswered points to take the 14-12 lead. An attack error by the Beavers did not change the momentum as they bounced back to run off another three straight points, making the score 17-13. The Cyclones did not give up, though; after trading points, Mills went on a five-point run and took back the lead at 20-19.
Another Jamshidi kill tied the game at 20-20, where the Cyclones went on another three-point run to make the score 23-20. The Beavers did not give in, however, as yet another kill Jamshidi led the Beavers to a four-point run that turned the tables at 24-23. Down but not yet out, the Cyclones registered a kill and benefited from an attacking error, leading to set point.
An attack error by the Cyclones gave the Beavers another chance and they capitalized, with senior Harinee Maiyuran (Irvine, Calif. / Arnold O. Beckman) serving up a clutch ace and setting up Pagadala for the kill to clinch the exciting second set.
The third set stood in stark contrast to the second, with Mills surging ahead 10-5 before Caltech took over, scoring 20 of the final 26 points to seal the victory.
Jamshidi double-doubled for the first time this season, smacking a team-high 19 kills on a .292 hitting percentage and leading the squad with 12 digs. Pagadala added six kills on a .294 hitting percentage while Maiyuran and junior Kate Lewis (San Antonio, Texas / Ronald Reagan) combined for 29 of the team's season-best 35 assists. Freshman Subhadra Vetrivel (Redmond, Wash. / Overlake School) and Jamshidi recorded five and four total blocks, respectively, as the team also set season highs in kills (38), digs (51) and blocks (8.0).
Caltech 3, Mills 0
Looking to improve from their first match, the Cyclones came out fired up as they took an early 8-6 lead in the first set. A Mills attack error keyed a 10-1 run, including six unanswered points, for the Beavers and Caltech rode the momentum to a 25-18 victory. In the second set, the Beavers took the early lead at 14-5 and held the margin through to a 25-19 win.
The third set was a true battle, with the Cyclones scoring the first two points of the set before a kill by Little woke up the Beavers. Caltech tallied four straight points to gain the edge, but Mills bounced right back to regain the lead and held it until midway through the set at 13-12, when the Beavers took the lead for good on four consecutive points and steadily outpaced the Cyclones en route to a 25-20 final.
Jamshidi again paced the Beavers with 13 kills, while Little added five and the pair each recorded two blocks. Senior Amy Hu (Rockville, Md. / Montgomery Blair) posted her second double-digit dig total of the season with a team-high 10, while Jamshidi's five aces led Caltech to a season-high 19, with another four from Pagadala and three each from Maiyuran, Pagadala and Lewis.
Head Coach Tom Gardner and the Beavers head to No. 6 Cal Lutheran (18-2, 8-0) for a 7:30 p.m. opening serve on Tuesday, Oct. 13.