Leopards Fall in SCIAC Tournament

Leopards Fall in SCIAC Tournament

CLAREMONT, CA — The University of La Verne volleyball team looked sharp in the first set against Claremont-Mudd-Scripps and took a 1-0 lead over the No. 5 team in the country in the opening match of the SCIAC Postseason Tournament.

But the upset wasn't meant to be as the Athenas rallied back to defeat the Leopards 3-1.

Set Scores: 24-26, 25-15, 25-17, 25-13

La Verne finishes the season 15-13 overall and 9-7 in SCIAC play. The Athenas improve to 25-3 overall and advance to the SCIAC Championship where they will host the Chapman Panthers.

Freshman Ayana Mier led all players with 17 kills with a .268 hitting percentage and added three blocks on the defensive end.

Junior Pi'ikea Clemens had a big all-around game, totaling nine kills, two blocks, and 10 digs. Senior First Team All-SCIAC selection Madison Maynes dished out a game-high 36 assists to go with 10 digs and a block.  

Freshman Jasmine Chandler had a huge game at the net leading the Leopards with five blocks and five kills. Emma Estigoy ended with a team-high 14 digs with three assists and an ace. Emily Heldenbrand added eight digs.

The Athenas were led by Amanda Walker's 14 kills and Tegan Dinovitz eight blocks.

The Leopards came out firing in the first set and took the opening 1-0 set lead. Mier led the Leopards' attack in the frame with seven kills. After the Athenas tied the match 24-24, Mier came through with a big kill to bring up set-point for La Verne. The Leopards caught a break on the next point when an Athena ball handling error gave La Verne the 26-24 set win.

The Athenas responded in commanding fashion in the second set, refusing to let Leopards take a 2-0 lead for the second straight game. CMS ended the set on a 10-3 run to even the match 1-1.

La Verne controlled the early part of the third set, taking a 10-7 lead off an ace by Estigoy. The Athenas responded from there, tying the set 14-14 before eventually taking a 20-15 lead. Out of timeout Emily Cohen grabbed a pass from Maynes and slammed it down for a kill to give her squad some life down 20-16, but the Leopards couldn't erase the deficit.

Claremont-Mudd-Scripps hit .462 in the third set and .424 in the fourth the take the match.

The Leopards will return the bulk of their roster and lose just two players, seniors Madison Maynes and Darrah Jones, to graduation.

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