Led by Margaux Arntson CM '18 and Shelbi Stein CM '18 with 16 and 14 kills respectively, the Claremont-Mudd-Scripps volleyball team (15-5, 7-1 SCIAC) managed to turn the match around and defeat Pomona-Pitzer (6-15, 3-6 SCIAC) 3-1 to secure a rivalry win. CMS now leads the SCIAC conference, while the Sagehens hold sixth place.
P-P started out in control. With a sequence of successful serves by Kayla Krilove PZ '21, P-P managed to open up a 12-6 lead in the start of the first set. Though the Athenas battled to turn the game around and nearly tied the set at 16 points, they fell behind again after a series of errors. The Sagehens then managed to close the first set 25-21 with a kill by Isabel Kelly PO '20.
But the momentum soon turned in the Athenas' favor. It was when Mikena Werner SC '18 served an ace to make the score 10-6 that the Athenas took over the second set. They rattled off six straight points to open a 10-point lead, and eventually crushed the set 25-11. CMS managed to set a similar pace throughout the whole third set, winning 25-12.
However, coming into the fourth set, P-P managed to find its rhythm again. With opposite hitter Kate Porter PO '18 crushing the ball for a kill, the Sagehens started out the eventual final set leading 6-2, setting the possibility of a fifth set high. But the Athenas responded in kind, and, with a great sequence of plays by Arntson, put themselves in front of the scoreboard 12-10. Now in front, and close to victory, CMS managed to hold off a P-P response and send the Sagehens home 25-19.
“We were so excited about the win. It’s always been such a fun rivalry for us. The girls felt really good going into it, and I think it showed in our performance,” Arnston said. “Dropping the first set was rough, but it showed us that we were going to have to put up a real fight if we wanted to win the next three. Overall, I’m so proud of our performance. We played with a really steady energy that carried throughout the match.”
In conclusion, Arntson remarked, “At this point, we’ve played everyone in SCIAC so we have a lot of detailed information on how they play and can take advantage of that. We just need to keep working hard in practice and it’ll show in games.”