ORANGE, Calif. – The winning streak extended to nine matches as the Chapman University volleyball team swept through visiting Occidental on Tuesday. Freshman Jessi Lumsden led the way with 15 kills for the Panthers (11-1, 3-0 SCIAC) in the 25-21, 25-16, 25-13 victory.
After both teams came out to a slow start in the first set, the Panthers turned it on and rolled to victories in sets two and three. Neither team hit over .100 in the first set but the Panthers took control with six straight points to turn a 4-4 tie into a 10-4 lead. Senior Sara Utsugi was at the service line for the lengthy run and helped things along with an ace in the middle of the streak.
Occidental (3-5, 0-2 SCIAC) battled back within two but never came closer as the Panthers closed out the set despite a .093 hitting percentage. Senior Courtney Justus had 13 of her 18 digs in the opening set while Utsugi tallied 10 of her 20 digs.
Lumsden caught fire in the second set, slamming down nine kills on 13 swings. Four of those kills came during a five-point run that opened a narrow 11-9 lead into a 16-9 lead. The Panthers continued to dominate and cruised to the 2-0 lead.
Senior Lindsey Johnson entered in the third set and hit five kills on nine tries as the Panthers rolled. Freshman Grayson Sulimoff played in the middle for the final two sets and recorded four kills while getting her hands on two blocks. Chapman methodically built another sizeable lead over the middle portion of the set but then scored the final six points of the match, ending with an ace from freshman Ashley Warmenhoven, to clinch another sweep.
Chapman ended up hitting .268 on the night while holding yet another opponent under the .100 benchmark. The Tigers hit just .096 as the Panthers put up 77 digs and six blocks. Senior Nayelli Munoz had a solo block as well as three block assists to lead the defense at the net.
Utsugi had 20 digs while Lumsden had a double-double with 15 kills and 13 digs. Freshman Sophie Srivastava had 22 assists to go along with 12 digs, seven kills and three blocks. Senior Kaitlyn Raymundo dished out 19 assists.
The Panthers head to Whittier on Friday night, looking to extend their win streak into double digits, and return home to face UC Santa Cruz on Saturday at 2 p.m.
By Steven Olveda
Sports Information Director