Yotes win first Pool Match at NAIA National Championships

Yotes win first Pool Match at NAIA National Championships
The new logo from the College of Idaho athletic department. A kickoff party (and debut of the new mascot uniform) will be September 2, 2011 on the C of I campus.
SIOUX CITY, Iowa – Using a decisive 16-1 edge in total blocks, The College of Idaho opened up Pool Play at the NAIA Volleyball National Championships, presented by CNOS Foundation with a 25-22, 25-16, 15-25, 25-17 victory over No. 11 ranked Westmont College, inside the Tyson Events Center.

The No. 14 ranked Lady Yotes (23-6) ran their win streak overall to seven in a row, while winning their opening match at the National Championship final site for the fourth-straight year. It also marked C of I’s first-ever win over a Golden State Athletic Conference program at the National Championships.

The Warriors (23-10) jumped out to a quick 8-5 lead in the opening set, as Nichole Miller had a pair of kills in the early going. A Jessica Peacock spike evened the period at 8-8, one of 12 ties in the frame. After Westmont took a 17-15 lead on a Chelsea Dornseif ace, the Yotes rattled off six-straight points – including a Sofia Anxo ace, and a kill and two blocks from Torrey Hulsey, taking a 21-17 lead. WC would get within 23-22 on a C of I hitting error, but kills from Liz Myers and Hulsey gave the Yotes the early match lead.

Set 2 was all C of I, getting four combo-blocks and a pair of Kylee Nawahine kills in a 10-3 run to open the game. Kills by Anxo, Hulsey, and Nawahine extended the lead to 17-9, with the Yotes cruising to the win. Set 3 was a different story, as Westmont got a pair of Madison Serrano kills in a 7-2 push to take a 10-5 lead. The C of I would close within 13-12 on a Hulsey kill, but Serrano had four kills and Ciara Turner added two kills in a decisive 9-1 spurt to give the Warriors the set.

Westmont grabbed an early 2-0 lead in Set 4 on Turner kill, but a four-point C of I surge gave the Yotes the lead for good. A kill and a solo block by Hulsey capped a three-point push to extend the lead to 11-7, while three Warrior hitting errors and a Nawahine ace gave the Yotes a 21-12 lead and rolled to the match win.

Peacock led the Yotes with 13 kills and 10 digs, with Myers adding 11 kills and six blocks. Hulsey had eight kills and a season-high eight blocks, Anxo had five kills, three aces, and 14 digs, and Nawahine had four kills, three aces, and a team-high 16 digs.

Sierra Porter recorded 39 assists, 10 digs, and four blocks, while Janel Porter had 12 digs – becoming the 11th C of I player to record 1,000-digs in a career.

Serrano led Westmont with 13 kills and 13 digs, with Turner adding 12 kills and Miller recording 11 kills. Setter Candice Adema had 48 assists and eight digs, with libero Kristin Schroeder leading all players with 25 digs. The Warriors lost despite holding a 51-43 edge in total kills – but the Coyote defense held Westmont to a .117 hitting percentage.

The Yotes will meet second-ranked and defending NAIA champion, Texas-Brownsville tomorrow at Noon in their second pool play match. UTB defeated St. Francis (Ill.) in three sets earlier today.