LOS ANGELES— Cal Lutheran's Amanda Roberts and Steph Rolfson both recorded a double-double as the Regals showed heart and composure in a hard-fought five-set win against the Occidental Tigers Friday night in Rush Gym. The scores were 23-25, 25-16, 22-25, 25-14, 15-4.
The Regals continue to hold down the fourth spot in the Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SCIAC). They are one game back of the No. 2 and 3 spots. The win helped Cal Lutheran distance themselves in the playoff race and gave a three-game lead over the fifth spot.
The Regals are now up to five wins in a row and are 15-9 on the year. They are 9-4 in conference. Cal Lutheran has won two straight five-set matches. The previous five-set win was against No. 2 Claremont-Mudd-Scripps.
Roberts led the way offensively and recorded a match-high 14 kills. She added 14 digs for the double-double. It is her 13thdouble-double of the year.
Rolfson put up her double-double with 30 assists and 12 digs. She added three kills and two service aces. She recorded her 10thdouble-double of the year. It is the 11thtime this year she has had 30 or more assists.
Taylor Johnson joined Roberts with double-digit kills and swatted down 10. Maci Haddad was next with nine, Jordan MacArthur had seven and Mackenzie Martinez and Daniella Villano chipped in with six each.
Defensively, Carly Rose Howard led Cal Lutheran with 16 digs. MacArthur made it four Regals with double-digit digs with 12. Haddad paced Cal Lutheran at the net with three blocks. Martinez and Johnson both recorded two.
The Regals continued their dominant play at the net and have 9.0 total team blocks in nine straight games. They shut down Oxy at the net as the Tigers only had one. Cal Lutheran was also serving well and recorded seven aces to Oxy's four.
The first set was extremely competitive and went back and forth. Altogether, there were nine lead changes and 12 ties. Oxy took the first set 25-23 and had the early lead in the match.
The Regals were looking to bounce back in the second set. With the score tied at 5, CLU scored four straight and had their biggest lead of the match so far. Roberts started the run with a kill, Hein served an ace to keep it going, Landrum and Johnson combined for a block and Johnson swatted down a kill.
Cal Lutheran continued to stack the points and was up 15-9 after back-to-back errors from the Tigers. More errors from Oxy gave CLU a 17-11 lead and the Tigers took a timeout. The Regals took advantage of the lead and claimed the set (25-16) and evened the match.
With the score tied at 9 in set two, Cal Lutheran went on a 5-1 run to take the lead. Hein, Roberts and Villano all swatted down a kill. The teams exchanged points over the next few plays and CLU had an 18-14 lead after a solo block by Hein. The Tigers fought back and ended the set on a 11-4 run and took the set 25-22 and a 2-1 match lead.
Cal Lutheran came out with firing in the fourth set and sent the match to a fifth and final set. The Regals opened with a 7-3 lead after back-to-back kills from Roberts and Johnson. CLU increased the lead even more and were up 10-5 after a kill from Villano. The Regals kept the points coming as Haddad, Martinez and Johnson all tallied kills to make it 17-10. Cal Lutheran didn't look back as the Regals cruised to a 25-14 set four win.
Cal Lutheran carried the momentum into the fourth set a took a quick 7-0 lead. After a service error by Oxy to start, Haddad recorded three kills and MacArthur added two more. Haddad and MacArthur also tallied a kill during the run. The Regals coasted the rest of the way and won the fifth set 15-4 and the game 3-2.
The Regals have three SCIAC opponents left in the regular season. Cal Lutheran returns home Saturday to host Whittier at 6 p.m. for Breast Cancer Awareness night.
Box Score: CLU 3, OXY 2
CLU Instagram: CLUSports
Sport IG: regals_volleyball
CLU Twitter: CLUSports
Sport Twitter: CLUwVolleyball
CLU Facebook: CLUSports
Hashtags: #clusports #ownthethrone #goregals #gokingsmen #theSCIAC #ncaad3
Release by Ryan Jorgenson, Sports Information Director