FOREST GROVE (9-2) – UC Santa Cruz finished up their time in Oregon as they took on 2017 NCAA Tournament team College of New Rochelle in Forest Grove. The Banana Slugs swept the Blue Angels and earned Gabrielle Houston her first win as coach of the Banana Slugs.
Both teams lost their last match. The Banana Slugs lost 3-1 to Pacific University last night while the Blue Angels lost 3-0 to George Fox University yesterday in Newberg.
In the first set, the Banana Slugs would start the set on a 12-3 run capped by a Claire Okerlund service ace. The Banana Slugs gained their largest lead of the set at fifteen on two occasions; the second occasion at set point on an Okerlund kill. The Banana Slugs won the first set 25-10.
In the second set, the Banana Slugs started the set outscoring the Blue Angels 8-4. The Blue Angels would go on a 5-1 spurt to the tie the set at 9-9. From that point, the Banana Slugs would go on an 8-0 run capped by an attack error by the Blue Angels to take a 17-9 lead. The Banana Slugs gained their largest lead of the set at twelve at 24-12 on an Isabella Hoglund kill and won the second set 25-14.
In the third set, the two teams would trade points for the first twelve serves. The Blue Angels would gain the lead and extend the lead to five at 15-10. The four point difference was the largest of the set for the Blue Angels. The Banana Slugs would then go on an 8-2 run, capped by a bad set by the Blue Angels, to give them the lead at 18-17. The Blue Angels would tie the match at 25-25 and would take the lead at 26-25. The Banana Slugs would score the last three points of the set to win the third set 28-26.
For UC Santa Cruz, Okerlund had a match-high seventeen kills and for College of New Rochelle, Imani DeBose had nine kills. Timolin Kepon had thirty-six assists for UC Santa Cruz and Sierra Plum had fifteen for College of New Rochelle. Rachel Sveiven led the Banana Slugs with a match high twenty digs and Stephanie Garcia had fourteen digs for the Blue Angels.
For the match, UC Santa Cruz had a .246 hitting percentage with the best percentage coming in the first set at .364 while College of New Rochelle had a .117 hitting percentage. The Banana Slugs had eleven more aces (13-2) than did the Blue Angels.
The Banana Slugs will continue their road trip Friday as they take on University of Redlands and Willamette University in Thousand Oaks.