Rainbow Wahine sweep Nevada

Robyn Ah Mow-Santos

HONOLULU—The University of Hawai’I women’s volleyball team (4-5) followed their thrilling five set victory last night over Baylor with a sweep over Nevada, 25-22, 25-23, 25-12 on the final night of the Outrigger Resorts Volleyball Challenge. The ‘Bows got off to a slow start, but caught fire late to defeat the Wolf Pack (2-6) on Saturday in the Stan Sheriff Center.

Senior libero Savanah Kahaki once again led Hawai’i with a match-high 18 digs. She continues to climb up the UH career dig list, surpassing former UH All-American Suzanne Eagye who recorded 1,138 during her career. Kahakai passed Eagye at No. 8 with 1,141 career digs. She only needs two more digs to tie former UH great Teee Williams at No. 7 who had 1,143.

Leading the Rainbow Wahine attack against Nevada was junior outside hitter McKenna Granato who had a match-high 16 kills to go with six digs and a block. Senior middle hitter Emily Maglio led the ‘Bows in blocks with a hand in six out of the team total eight. Maglio also added nine kills and a dig. Sophomore setter Norene Iosia dished out 40 assists and posted another double-double with 11 digs plus five blocks and a service ace.

Freshman middle hitter Sophia Howling got her first start of her career and contributed two kills. Sophomore outside hitter Kirsten Sibley also started the match and contributed two kills and a dig.

UH got off to a sluggish start as Nevada took an early lead in the first set, going on a five point run. The Wolf Pack would eventually lead by as much as six points at 12-6 before UH started to fight back. Hawai’i then won six of the next seven points—three of which came on Clare-Marie Anderson‘s serves to close to within one point.  The ‘Bows were finally able to tie the score at 15-15 and later broke through with the lead at 20-19. UH kept things rolling and won the first set, 25-22.

The Wolfpack came out strong again in the second set, taking another early lead. But the ‘Bows were able to catch the Wolf Pack at 13-13 and went on to win the set 25-23.

Freshman middle hitter Skyler Williams and senior outside hitter Kendra Koelsch got the start in the third set. The Bows took the lead from the get go as it jumped out to an early 6-1 lead from which Nevada could not recover from. With Kahakai serving, the ‘Bows went on a six point run and pulled away to win the third set 25-12 to seal the sweep.

Hawai’i out-blocked Nevada, 8.0-to-5.5 and out-hit the Wolf Pack .390-to-.234. The ‘Bows were very efficient in the third set, posting an 84% sideout.

For the Wolfpack, sophomore middle hitter Shayla Hoeft of Kihei, Maui led in kills with 12 and had three blocks. Fellow local girl freshman outside hitter Kayla Afoa tied the high in blocks with three and had five kills.

The Rainbow Wahine will challenge Northern Arizona University twice next weekend. The first match is set for Sept. 15 at 7 p.m. in the Stan Sheriff Center.

By the end of the tournament, three teams were tied with a 2-1 record: BYU, Baylor and Hawai’i. After tie-breakers, BYU was decided as the winner of the tournament with Hawai’i as the runner up.

Outrigger Resorts Volleyball Challenge All-Tournament Team
Katie Staiger (Baylor)
McKenna Granato (Hawai’i)
Emily Maglio (Hawaii)
Veronica Jones-Perry (BYU)
Shayla Hoeft (Nevada)
Mary Lake (BYU)

Most Outstanding Player: McKenna Miller (BYU)

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