FRESNO (10-3) - UC Santa Cruz continued their road trip through California as they took on NCAA Division II member Fresno Pacific University in Fresno. The Sunbirds swept the Banana Slugs 3-0.
Both team lost their last match. The Banana Slugs lost 3-1 to University of Redlands in Redlands on Saturday while the Sunbirds lost 3-1 to Notre Dame De Namur University on Saturday in Belmont.
In the first set, the Sunbirds started the set on a 7-0 run capped by a Caroline Bodziak kill. The Banana Sugs would come as close as three on five different occasions; the fifth occasion at 15-12 on a Sunbirds' service error. The Sunbirds would gain their largest lead of the set at eight, at 20-12, on a Madison Pierce kill. The Sunbirds won the first set 25-19 and took a 1-0 lead.
In the second set, the Banana Slugs would take a two point lead on two occasions; the second occasion at 3-1 on a Kallan Bedard kill. The two point lead was the largest of the set for the Banana Slugs. The Sunbirds, from that point, would go on a 3-0 spurt capped by a Banana Slugs' attack error. The Sunbirds would gain a double digit lead at 17-7 on a Christina Tran kill. The Sunbirds would gain their largest lead of the set at fourteen on two different occasions; the second occasion at set point on a Malerie Crenshaw kill. The Sunbirds won the second set 25-11 and took a 2-0 lead in the match.
In the third set, the Sunbirds scored the first two points of the set. The Banana Slugs would work their way back into the set and would take the lead at 9-8 on a Sierra Yuen kill. The Banana Slugs would gain their largest lead of the set at two, at 10-8, on a Sunbirds' attack error. The Sunbirds would then go on a 9-2 run, capped by a service ace, to give the Sunbirds the lead for good at 17-12. The Sunbirds would gain their largest lead of the set at eleven, at match point, on a Hannah Miller kill. The Sunbirds won the third set 25-14 and the match 3-0. The loss extended the Banana Slugs' losing streak to five.
For UC Santa Cruz, Tatum Novitzky had seven kills and for Fresno Pacific, Kylei Dewar had a match high twelve kills. Krysti Photias had thirteen assists for UC Santa Cruz and Greta Dobenecker had twenty for Fresno Pacific. Monica Lee led the Banana Slugs with nine digs and Tiff Wong had a match high thirteen digs for the Sunbirds.
For the match, UC Santa Cruz had a .060 hitting percentage with the best percentage coming in the first set at .118 while Fresno Pacific had a .344 hitting percentage with the best percentage coming in the second set at .423. The Sunbirds had twenty five more kills (45-20) than did the Banana Slugs.
The Banana Slugs will travel now to Southern California to take part in the Leopard Invitational hosted by University of La Verne in La Verne. The Banana Slugs will take on Austin College and University of Scranton on Friday and, on Saturday, the Banana Slugs will take on Whittier College and the host Leopards.