Vulcans Drop Ninth Straight to #5 BYU-Hawai`i
The University of Hawai`i at Hilo women’s volleyball team struggled to maintain positive momentum Saturday against Brigham Young University-Hawai`i.
The Vulcans showed signs of promise but ultimately fell flat to the Seasiders in a four-set defeat. Set scores were 25-10, 25-19, 19-25, 25-12.
In each of the first two sets, Hawai`i-Hilo jumped out to 3-1 leads before fifth-ranked Seasiders took control. In the first, BYU-Hawai`i went on a 10-1 scoring run to open an 11-4 lead. The visitors didn’t relent, quieting the home crowd with a lopsided finish to the opening frame.
In the second, BYUH went on a 6-0 scoring run to take an 8-4 lead. UHH did not fade away so quickly, but could only get within two points of the Seasiders before falling two sets to none.
As the intermission between sets two and three ended, the Vulcans were nowhere to be found on the court. About thirty seconds after the 10 minute clock expired, several Vulcans ran onto the court, seemingly unaware that they had appeared late. UHH used a timeout before the set even started to properly turn in a lineup. Following the timeout, official Brian Kalauli issued a yellow card to the Vulcans for a delay of game warning.
UHH head coach Tino Reyes, when asked about why the team came out for the third set late, said that it was a “private moment with the team.”
BYU-Hawai`i (13-1, 8-1) seemed to feed off of the chaos coming from the other side of the net, scoring the first five points. Reyes’ message, however, started to sink in for the Vulcans. UHH went on a 6-0 scoring run early in the set to take an 11-8 lead and closed the set with five straight points to pull away and force a fourth frame.
“We played a little bit better and BYU didn’t play as well in that third game and consequently, we won that third game,” said Reyes after the match. “If you look at the stats, that was the first game that we had double-digit kills and we had four hitting errors. That’s a big deal for us.”
Once again, the Vulcans started off strong, holding on to the momentum gained in the third by opening a 4-1 lead early. BYU-Hawaii regained control of the match with a 7-0 scoring stretch to take a 13-8 lead. UHH committed five attack errors following that run to help BYUH close out the set and the match.
“Anything we did out of the back row in the game wasn’t very good,” Reyes explained. “They (BYU-Hawai`i) stayed down, and that number 22 (Shih Ting Chen), she’s such a good volleyball player. She probably had double-digit digs.”
Shih Ting Chen, who goes by the name Stella, recorded eight of her 20 digs in the final set. The junior from Taiwan, who has won the PacWest Player of the Year award in each of her first two seasons, led the Seasiders with 19 kills and complied a .312 attack percentage.
Teammate Erica Willes contributed 11 kills and hit .325 on the night.
Kyndra Trevino-Scott led UHH with 10 kills on 30 attacks. She hit .167 for the match. As a team, the Vulcans hit .099.
UHH’s eight-match homestand continues Wednesday as the Vulcans host Azusa Pacific. First serve is scheduled for 7:00 p.m.
BYU-Hawai`i 25 25 19 25 – 3
Hawai`i Hilo 10 19 25 12 – 1