Banana Slugs Ground Soaring Eagles in Five

Banana Slugs Ground Soaring Eagles in Five

ELMIRA, NY -- UC Santa Cruz started their first of two major road swings tonight as they took on Elmira College in Elmira, New York. For the third time this season, the Banana Slugs came back twice from one set down in a match. The Banana Slugs improved their record in five set matches to 2-1 as they defeated the Soaring Eagles 3-2. 

Both teams were coming off victories in their last match. The Banana Slugs were coming off a 3-0 victory over UC Merced in Merced on Saturday while the Soaring Eagles were coming off a 3-0 win over Fontbonne University on Sunday in Greenville, Pennsylvania. 

In the first set, the Banana Slugs started off with a fast start with a 4-1 run capped by a Soaring Eagles' attack error. The Soaring Eagles would claw their way back into the set and took the lead at 10-9 after a Banana Slugs' attack error. The two teams would play back and forth volleyball for the next seventeen serves. The Soaring Eagles would take the lead for good, at 19-18, on an Erik Griffin kill. The Soaring Eagles would take their largest lead at four on two occasions; the second occasion coming at set point, at 25-21, on a Banana Slugs' attack error. The Soaring Eagles won the set 25-21 and would take a 1-0 match lead. 

The second set started in the Soaring Eagles' advantage with a 5-1 run capped by a Banana Slugs' attack error. The Banana Slugs would get back into the set and tie the set at 10-10 on a Jake Landel kill. The Soaring Eagles would extend their lead to three, at 16-13, after a Tyler Smith kill. Once again, the Banana Slugs would work their way back into the set and would take the lead at 21-20 on a Jake Howard kill. The two teams would trade the lead back and forth for the remainder of the set. The set would need extra serves to complete the set. After a Soaring Eagles' service error tied the set at 28-28, the Soaring Eagles would commit two attack errors to give the Banana Slugs a 30-28 second set victory and would tie the match at 1-1. 

The entire third set was played back and forth with neither team gaining a larger lead than two during the course of the set. After the Banana Slugs' Brian Campbell tied the set at 23-23, the Soaring Eagles got two Mike Ellison kills to give the Soaring Eagles a 25-23 third set win and a 2-1 match lead. 

The fourth set started off with the persistent back and forth pace. The Banana Slugs would take a 7-5 lead after a Soaring Eagles' attack error. The Soaring Eagles would take the lead at 8-7 on a Carlos Faccio service ace. The Banana Slugs would take the lead for good in the set, at 14-13, on a Howard kill. The Banana Slugs would gain their largest lead of the set at six on two occasions; the second coming at set point, at 25-19, on a Jorge Reyes kill. The Banana Slugs won the set 25-19 and would tie the match at 2-2. 

In the fifth and decisive set, the two teams would back and forth volleyball for the first eight sets. The Banana Slugs would take the lead for good, at 5-4, on a Soaring Eagles' service error. The Banana Slugs would gain their largest lead of the set, at four, on three occasions; the third coming at match point as Campbell scored a kill to give the Banana Slugs a 15-11 fifth set win and the Banana Slugs won the match 15-11. 

For UC Santa Cruz, Landel had a match high twenty three kills and for Elmira, Griffin had twenty kills. Blake Chadwick had forty five assists for UC Santa Cruz and Faccio had a match high fifty seven for Elmira. Hurwitz led the Banana Slugs with a match high fifteen digs and Rob Shade had fourteen digs for the Golden Bobcats.