Westminster women's volleyball wins twice on opening day

By Joshua Fisher

For the Deseret News

Published: Friday, Aug. 17 2012 11:13 p.m. MDT

ASHLAND, Ore. – The Westminster College women's volleyball team opened the 2012 season with two wins at the Paul Elliott Invitational on Friday. Westminster claimed a 3-0 sweep over Oregon Tech in the opener and then came back Friday night for a 3-1 win over UC-Merced.

This marks the third consecutive season the Griffins have started the season 2-0.

Against Oregon Tech (0-1), Westminster earned the sweep by scores of 25-14, 26-24, 25-21. The Griffins recorded 29 kills and seven service aces in the match. They got off to a quick start hitting .233 in the opening set with a 73 percent sideout percentage. Westminster finished hitting .145 in the match and defensively held OIT to .000 hitting.

Eight different Griffins recorded multiple kills with Ashley Marchant leading the way with seven. She hit .375 in the match, while picking up 11 digs and three service aces. Alexis Aalona added five kills and six digs. Katie Vance and Alyse Horton finished with four kills apiece.

The Griffins took a 25-18, 22-25, 25-15, 25-14 decision over UC-Merced in the night cap. It was another solid performance offensively for the Griffins. They racked up 45 kills with only 12 errors for a .295 efficiency. They finished with a 68.4 sideout percentage, including 81 and 78 percent in sets three and four, respectively. Westminster also totaled nine service aces and six blocks in the match.

Vance finished with nine kills and hit .562 thanks to zero errors. She also grabbed three blocks, one ace and one dig. Marchant chipped in another seven kills and six digs. Aalona, Stephanie Jones Morin and Kenzie Mitchell had six kills apiece. Emily Atkinson recorded 37 assists and nine digs, while Kyndall Kordakis recorded 14 digs.

Westminster will return to action with two matches on Saturday. The team will first face the host Southern Oregon at 1 p.m. and then conclude the weekend with a 5 p.m. match against Viterbo (Wisc.).

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