Squad travels to two difficult conference matchups on the road
THE SANTA CLARA
October 9, 2014
The Broncos faced a gruesome schedule that included visiting the No. 24 ranked University of San Diego and then battling No. 10 Brigham Young University in Utah this past weekend.
With fresh legs and high spirits from a win against University of the Pacific on Tuesday, the Broncos made a trip down to San Diego to take on the highly regarded Toreros team.
Sophomore Nikki Hess stood out with 21 kills, nine aces, a block solo and three block assists. The two middles were key in the Bronco’s success, with freshmen Natasha Calkins and Kaity Edwards earning 19 kills and 11 block assists between them. Edwards felt good about Saturday’s win. “They were the (No. 24) team in the nation so that’s a very good win for us, especially on the road,” she said.
The Broncos battled hard, and after losing their first set 23-25, they turned around and won the next three 25-19, 25-23 and 25-23 again.
Head Coach Jon Wallace was pleased with Saturday’s outcome and noted the significance of an away victory. “Beating San Diego at San Diego was a great win for the program, and once again we had great play by Nikki Hess,” Wallace said. “Kirsten Mead, our freshman center, was great; Katie Edwards and Natasha Calkins had phenomenal matches.”
Sunday, however, proved to be bit more of a challenge.
The Broncos traveled straight to BYU with a seven-hour layover after their stint in San Diego, with barely 24 hours to recover and prepare for Sunday’s game.
The Broncos lost all three sets 25-10, 25-16 and 25-18. Hess was once again crucial, leading the team with 11 kills. Mead was a notable player yet again, with 25 assists and seven digs.
“We walked out of that match with a new sense of direction and drive and determination,” Wallace said.
Junior Dani Rottman also agreed with his sentiments. “The game against BYU was a little tough — they’re a really good team and it’s always hard to play in their gym,” she said. Santa Clara faces two conference opponents at home this week — University of Portland on Thursday and Gonzaga University on Friday.
“I feel really good about the (last) week; we learned a lot and got some wins, and we’re ready to go forward with this week,” he said. “We had great Ruff Rider support (last Tuesday) which was awesome. They were really cool — I think they kind of lifted our girls.”
Contact Alli Kleppe at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (408) 554-4852.