Whitman Defeats Bearcats in Three Sets in NWC Action

Waltz Leads Willamette with 10 Kills and a .370 Hitting Percentage

By Robert McKinney, Athletics Communications Director, (503) 370-6110

SALEM, ORE. -- Whitman College held off Willamette University in three consecutive sets to defeat the Bearcats, 3-0, in a Northwest Conference volleyball match at Cone Field House on Friday, Oct. 19. The Missionaries won 25-18, 25-21, 25-20.

The victory improved Whitman to 8-11 overall, 6-6 in the Northwest Conference. Willamette fell to 6-12 overall, 4-7 in the NWC.

Courtney Brewer led Whitman with 13 kills and a .423 hitting percentage. Jillian Davis supplied 10 kills and 13 digs. Whitman's libero, Hannah Linsenmayer, achieved a match-high 16 digs for the Missionaries.

Shannon Waltz (Jr., MH, Honolulu, HI/La Pietra HS) provided Willamette with 10 kills and no attacking errors, while earning a .370 hitting percentage. Carly Hargrave (Jr., MH, Happy Valley, OR/Clackamas HS) finished with nine kills and a .333 hitting percentage. Kathy Lee Glenn (Sr., LIB/DS, Murrieta, CA/Vista Murrieta HS) achieved a team-high 15 digs.

Two consecutive kills by Willamette's Madisyn Leenstra (Sr., OH/MH, Bellingham, WA/Sehome HS) gave the Bearcats a 7-5 lead early in the first set. Whitman countered with a 7-0 run -- including six points with Olivia Nielson serving -- as the Missionaries surged into a 12-7 lead. The run featured a kill and an ace by Nielson, three kills from Brewer and two attacking errors by the Bearcats.

Willamette stopped the run with a kill by Waltz, but Whitman tallied the next three points on two kills by Brewer and one by Jazmine Moledina to claim a 15-8 advantage. Willamette cut the margin to 17-14 on another kill by Waltz.

A kill by Rachel Cline of Whitman pushed the lead to four points and a kill by Davis extended the advantage to 19-14. Waltz tacked on two kills, as the Bearcats pulled within 19-16.

The teams exchanged the next two points on a kill by Megan Bafus of Whitman plus a kill by Waltz. Whitman followed with a 4-0 run for a 24-17 lead. After Waltz registered her sixth kill of the set, Brewer answered with a kill to give the Missionaries a 25-18 win.

In the second set, Willamette moved out to a 7-4 lead. Whitman eventually tied the set at 8-8 on a kill by Moledina and later held a 12-9 lead after a kill by Brewer. The Missionaries built a 17-12 advantage, but the Bearcats battled back with a 5-2 run that cut the margin to 19-17.

A hitting error by WU increased Whitman's lead to 20-17. Alisa Ahern (So., OPP, Lake Forest park, WA/Shorecrest HS) pounded down a kill to pull the Bearcats within 20-18. Willamette also trailed by just two points three more times, including 23-21 following a kill by Hargrave, but couldn't get any closer. Whitman won the set, 25-21.

Willamette started well in the third set, taking leads of 3-0, 7-3 and 10-7. The Missionaries responded with a 5-0 run that included three kills by Davis.

The Bearcats fought back to within a single point at 13-12 and 14-13, but couldn't immediately catch Whitman. The Missionaries tacked on three consecutive points for a 17-13 edge, before Willamette erased the margin with a 5-1 run.

Whitman broke the 18-18 on a kill by Moledina. Brewer added a successful attack and Willamette committed an attacking error, before Brewer contributed another kill to give Whitman a 22-18 lead. WU tallied the next point on an attacking miscue by Whitman, but the Missionaries went on a 3-1 run to end the set and the match with a 25-20 victory.

During the match, Whitman attained 41 kills and a .193 hitting percentage, while Willamette earned 36 kills and a .120 hitting percentage. The Bearcats held a slim 55-54 edge in digs and also earned 9.5 team total blocks, compared to 6.0 blocks for Whitman. The Missionaries picked up five service aces and committed three serving errors. Willamette recorded two service aces and made six serving errors.

The Bearcats will host Whitworth University on Saturday (Oct. 20). Match time is set for 5 p.m. (PDT).

BOX SCORE

Whitman College 3
Willamette University 0
Whitman won 25-18, 25-21, 25-20

Shannon Waltz earned four block assists to go with 10 kills and a .370 hitting percentage against the Missionaries.

Shannon Waltz earned four block assists to go with 10 kills and a .370 hitting percentage against the Missionaries.