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Volleyball - Sat, Sep. 9, 2017 - posted by Seth Preuss
Katie Landazuri continues to close on the all-time kills record for HIU
Katie Landazuri continues to close on the all-time kills record for HIU
(RV)Hope International
Vanguard University

COSTA MESA, CA – (RV) Hope International opened GSAC play at Vanguard University on Saturday, Sept. 9 and pushed their hosts to five sets. The Royals won the first set of the night and narrowly lost a competitive second set before forcing the issue in the fourth frame with a win in extra rallies, but it wasn't enough to carry the night.

HIU looked polished and put together in the first set as the team got a feel for its opponent in the evening's opening bout. After a 9-9 tie, the Royals pulled away and made quick work of the Lions for a lead that was never relinquished down the stretch behind serves from Shea Beeman to keep VU off-balance and out of system. HIU would win the first set 25-18 and appeared to have all the momentum heading into set two.

The Lions benefited from their home crowd and regained composure in the break between sets – HIU found itself deadlocked with VU for the first half of the second set and was unable to pull away. A late burst from the hosting Lions proved to be the difference and gave Vanguard a 25-23 win and evened the set count at 1-1 after 13 tied scores and seven lead changes in the evening's second offering.

Set three was far and away the Royals' worst of the night. The Royals tallied more attack errors than kills in the third stanza and sided out only 23% of the time as Vanguard cruised to a relatively uneventful 25-11 win in the set and looked poised to take the match in the fourth with momentum firmly on its side.

Coach Jessica Walker rallied her team in the fourth, however, and made the Lions fight every inch of the way. An early 11-6 lead for HIU drew a timeout from Vanguard's head coach, and while the Lions were able to close the gap HIU did enough to claim the set and stretch the evening out by another 20 minutes of play. A 27-25 win forced a fifth set and gave the Royals a shot at snapping their winless streak in five-set matches.

The fifth set started as competitively as the fourth had ended with each team trading rallies and side-out opportunities all the way to a 10-10 tie. The Royals knotted up the score a final time but ran out of magic after a block set by Maddy Barrett and Jessica Zieg made it 10-10. Vanguard would take advantage of HIU errors down the stretch and scored five answered points to claim the evening with a 15-10 final in set five.

Katie Landazuri led HIU with 17 kills and is now 89 kills shy of owning the school record outright with 1068 kills to her current credit – the record presently stands at 1156 and is owned by Alyson Lumley.

Jessica Zieg dished out 44 assists in the loss and Shea Beeman led the back line with 31 digs – Beeman needs 40 more digs to become the third leading player in program history, with the present third-best mark being set at 1252 digs by Jocelyn Moya.

Four Royals produced double-figure digs on the night in the loss (Carleigh Cruz, Landazuri, Zieg, and Beeman) and Barrett joined Landazuri as the other Royal with double-digit kills. Kierra Pearson was a close third for HIU with nine in two sets of action on the evening.

HIU returns home to host GSAC foes Menlo and William Jessup on Sept. 15 & 16 before heading back on the road to finish out the majority of its September slate. After hosting MC & WJU the Royals will play four straight on the road before host No. 5 Westmont on Sept. 30. Links to live content for all home and away matches are available at hiuroyals.com.

W - Volleyball
Overall GSAC Streak
10-4 (.714) 3-1 (.750) Won 4