#8 Rainbow Wahine win 10th straight match

Nikki Taylor celebrates a point against Florida // Hawaii Athletics

HONOLULU—The No. 8 University of Hawai’i women’s volleyball team returned to the Stan Sheriff Center to sweep CSUN, 25-19, 25-16, 25-16 on Friday night. For the Rainbow Wahine, it marked their 10th-straight win and their sixth-straight sweep. Nikki Taylor led Hawai’i with 14 kills while Olivia Magill had a match-high eight blocks and Savanah Kahakai had a match-high 14 digs. Hawai’i improved to 15-1 overall and 5-0 in the Big West while CSUN fell to 4-13 overall and 3-2 in conference.

Taylor, UH’s junior opposite, recorded double-digit kills for the 15th time this season. It also was the 15th time that Taylor led UH in kills this year. Taylor hit .393 for the night with three errors in 28 attacks. She also recorded four blocks, three digs and an ace to fill her stat line.

Tai Manu-Olevao also notched double-digits in kills for UH with 10. She added three digs, three blocks and hit .318 for the night with three errors in 22 swings.

Kalei Greeley also had a solid game, putting down nine kills on 13 attempts and no errors for a career-high .692 hitting percentage. She also contributed with four digs and a block.

Setter Kendra Koelsch made her second career-start and her first start at the Stan Sheriff Center. She dished out a career-high 40 assists while adding seven digs and four blocks.

Hawai’i, the No. 1-ranked blocking team in the nation, kept things rolling by out-blocking the Matadors, 14.0-to-5.0. Seven different Rainbow Wahine had at least one block in the match.  The Rainbow Wahine also out-hit CSUN for the match, .405-to-.102. The .405 hitting percentage was a season-high for the Rainbow Wahine and the highest since the team hit .405 against Cal Poly on Oct. 12, 2013.

The Rainbow Wahine jumped out to a quick 5-1 lead early in the first set with four points coming on Manu-Olevao’s serve to force an early CSUN time out. But the Matadors would keep fighting eventually catching then taking the lead at 12-11 and then again at 13-12. But the ‘Bows would settle down and reel off five straight points with Kalei Greeley serving to give UH a 21-15 lead. Hawai’i would win the first set, 25-19. The first set saw five ties and three lead changes before UH pulled away for the win.

The second set was close in the beginning, but behind the serving of Manu-Olevao, UH won five-straight points to go up 14-9. UH would extend their lead to 18-10 with Kahakai serving four-straight points. Hawai’i would pull away, to win the second set, 25-16.

UH would take an early 4-0 lead in the third set and they never looked back. The ‘Bows would lead by as much as 19-11 before CSUN would score four-straight points to close within four points at 19-15. But Hawai’i would score six of the last seven points to take the third set, 25-16.

Hawai’i has now won 19-straight sets dating back to the fourth set of the CSU Bakersfield match on Sept. 18. Hawai’i’s 10-match win streak is the longest since the 2012 season when UH won 19-straight matches.

The Rainbow Wahine will face defending Big West champions, Long Beach State on Sunday, October 11 at 5:00 pm. Last season the 49ers won both matches against UH in five sets.

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