ORANGE, Calif. – A trio of freshmen led the Chapman University women's volleyball team to a 25-18, 25-17, 25-18 sweep of visiting Whittier. The Panthers' three freshmen combined for 20 kills and the Panthers hit .347 as a team in the crucial sweep.
With the sweep, the Panthers (18-4, 9-3 SCIAC) kept control of second place in the SCIAC standings with four matches left to play.
Freshman Jessi Lumsden led the way with 11 kills in the sweep but fellow first-year Erika Wiles hit .588 with 10 kills. Freshman Sophie Srivastava tallied nine kills on .412 hitting with 15 assists and six digs.
It was Lumsden who put the Panthers in front in the first set. A close set to the midway point featured a 13-10 Whittier lead. Lumsden slammed down a kill to sideout and then served two aces on a seven-point run that turned the deficit into a 16-13 lead.
Chapman seized all the momentum and continued to run away with a 25-18 win in the first set. The momentum stayed with Chapman as the Panthers scored the first seven points of the second set and cruised to a 2-0 lead in the match.
Whittier went out in front early in an attempt to avoid the sweep but a Wiles kill capped a 7-2 run that turned a 7-7 game into a 14-9 lead. Chapman never looked back and cruised to the sweep.
The Panthers hit .347 as a team but used 10 total blocks to limit Whittier (14-9, 7-4 SCIAC) to just .125 hitting. Makenzie Thieme hit .310 to lead the Poets with 13 kills and 11 digs.
The Panthers take a three-match winning streak to Pomona-Pitzer on Saturday for a 1 p.m. match.
By Steven Olveda
Sports Information Director