The UCSB women’s volleyball team fell in a first-place battle at Hawaii on Saturday night, losing in four sets, 25-21, 20-15, 25-18, 25-22.

The Gauchos dropped to 8-2 in the Big West while Hawaii improved to 9-1.

The Gauchos went on a 6-1 run to rally for the win in the second set. Kills by Deni Wilson and Briana McKnight and a huge block by Wilson and Tallulah Froley sparked the run.

Hawaii reclaimed control in the third set, but had to fight off the Gauchos in the fourth.

UCSB pulled to within two points, 21-19 before Rainbow Wahine regrouped and held on for the victory.

UCSB libero Macall Peed an impressive night, picking up 20 digs and adding nine assists.

Michelle Ohwobete set a new season-high with a 18 kills on a .271 hitting average to led the Gaucho attack. She added three blocks and six digs.

Froley put away 14 kills and hit. 323, and McKnight had nine kills and 13 digs.

Setter Mehana Ma’a had a double-double of 21 assists and 10 digs.

For Hawaii, Riley Wagoner led a balanced offensive effort with a double-double of a team-high 17 kills to go with 13 digs. Amber Igiede added 13 kills, four blocks and eight digs. Setter Kate Lang dished ou a match-high 41 assists.

UCSB returns home to play UC Irvine next Thursday before seeing UC San Diego on Sunday.

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Barry Punzal, Sports Editor

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