Sophomore Alison Sharp tallied nine kills, nine digs and two service errors while posting an attack percentage of .529 to help lead Westmont volleyball to a 3-0 win over The Master’s College at Murchison Gymnasium on Tuesday.
Freshman Sami Miller added nine more kills while Beth Widicus and Stephanie Dunn contributed seven apiece as the Warriors improved their overall record to 7-6 and their Golden State Athletic Conference record to 1-2.
“I think you saw tonight a different team attitude, and I really was impressed with the way they came out ready to play and were aggressive,” head coach Jim Smoot said. “Alison had nine kills in 17 attempts with no errors. She only had two aces on the stat sheet, but that doesn’t tell the story. She hammered so many serves that took The Master’s out of there offense. Instead of trying to hit a specific zone, I encouraged the team to go back there and hammer the serves to initiate aggressiveness from the outset.”
After battling to a 5-5 tie in the first set, Westmont went on a 14-2 run. During the stretch, freshman Stacey Braceros served for eight points, including three aces. Braceros, along with junior Erin Dohm, also contributed to the Warrior cause by anchoring the defense.
“The passing was really good tonight,” Smoot said. “Stacey and Erin did a great job of passing in addition to the outsides. Those two were very steady. I think we came out very strong. In our first home game, we showed who Westmont volleyball really is. We came and represented and did very well.”
The second set proved to be much closer as the Mustang’s rallied to give Westmont a challenge. Down 7-2, The Master’s fought back to tie the set at 13. Still tied at 22, Widicus, Sharp and Miller produced kills in three of the next four rallies to give Westmont a 2-0 advantage.
“Sami has been amazing. She and Kailee (Blair) have been connecting really well,” Sharp said. “We all really wanted to win, and we knew that we had to play together. Everyone played very well.”
The third set also proved to be close, but with the scored tied at 14-all, Westmont scored 10 of the next 15 points to go up 24-19. After The Master’s head coach Kristine Bulter called a timeout, the Mustangs scored the next four points, three on service aces to pull to within one (24-23). But a quick set from Blair to Miller resulted in the final kill of the game and gave the Warriors the sweep.
“We had a lot of fan support which was really helpful,” Sharp said. “It was really nice to have the crowd behind us.”
Westmont will be back in action at 7 p.m. Thursday when the team travels to Thousand Oaks to take on California Lutheran.
Ron Smith is Westmont College‘s sports information director.