Westmont Volleyball is still in search of its first home win after Friday night’s loss to the Azusa Pacific Cougars.
Westmont dropped the first set by double-digits but was able to knot things up with a convincing set two victory.
In the third and fourth sets, however, the Cougars pulled away to take both and end the match in four.
Individually, Westmont saw a standout performance from Nariah Prescott, who collected a season-high 14 kills. Aside from Prescott, Alexis Dennick added seven kills of her own, while Phoebe Minch tallied 11.
Ella Hosfeld led Westmont with 18 assists, while Hosfeld and Alexa Shiner both collected a trio of service aces. Defensively, libero Kaili Hashimoto added in 15 digs.
“We have a lot of the pieces, but the puzzle has not been put together,” Westmont head coach Ruth McGolpin said. “That’s what’s frustrating as a coach. We have the right pieces and we have our moments, but we haven’t been able to piece things together consistently.
“Jessie Terlizzi played great all around, and Nariah Prescott came up big as well. Those two, in particular, really stood out. I thought our passing was really good all-around as well.”
Azusa Pacific could do no wrong in the first set, taking the opening game 25-11 to set the tone.
In the second set, Westmont found their footing early to go up 12-7 and never trailed again once they entered double-digits. Eventually, one of Minch’s 11 kills gave Westmont a 25-17 win to even the match.
In set three, APU distanced themselves from Westmont quickly, with the Cougars scoring 10 of the set’s first 15 points, and later on leading by as many as eight at 15-7.
A late rally by Westmont allowed the final score to look more competitive at 25-21, but the Cougars comfortably cruised to a 2-1 set advantage.
In set four, the teams traded rallies to a 21-21 tie, but once APU went up 22-21, Westmont would not again tie the set.
The Cougars ended the match on a 4-1 run, winning the final game 25-22 with their 43rd kill to take the match three sets to one.
“Credit to APU,” McGolpin said. “They out-dug us, out-blocked us, and out-played us in a lot of ways. For the team, I hope they stew on this for a couple of hours, but when they put their head on the pillow, regroup and be ready to go tomorrow.”
Westmont returns to action on Saturday night in Murchison Gym, where the Warriors will renew their rivalry with the Biola Eagles at 7:00 p.m.