CLAREMONT, Calif. – The 18-game win streak for the Claremont-Mudd-Scripps volleyball team in the 2016 campaign came to an end the with the 3-2 loss to the University of La Verne (20-25, 21-25, 26-24, 25-21, 15-10) on Tuesday night in front of a rowdy crowd. CMS jumped out to a two set lead but then the Leos built momentum to the fifth set, ultimately taking it 15-10.
The Athenas in the first two sets were markedly different from the Athenas in the third and fourth sets, both in statistics and demeanor. In the first two sets, CMS hit .325 compared to the Leos' .146. In the latter sets, the Athenas dropped down to .178 as La Verne improved to .292.
Junior Shelbi Stein (CMC) and senior Nicole Kerkhof (CMC) got things going in the first set offensively. The two of them combined for 11 kills and just one error. When La Verne threatened late in the set, senior Natalie Creekmur (CMC) came up with a big one-handed dig that ultimately gave junior Clara Madsen (CMC) and Kerkhof the opportunity for a kill, increasing up to 22-19, but swaying the game significantly in the Athenas' direction.
The swing in the second set was created by a well-placed timeout when CMS was down 16-13. Creekmur subbed in on the subsequent point and served for six in a row as Stein racked up another kill. Stein led all players with 24 kills on the night and after the first four sets, she was hitting .452.
The Leopards and Athenas traded leads seven times during the third set and the 26-24 win for ULV earned them enough momentum to win the next game. The fourth set saw CMS hit only .116 and almost double the errors committed in the first set.
La Verne took advantage of some miscommunication by the Athenas midway through the fifth and went on a three point run to get to 8-5 when the teams changed sides. Delany Lynch recorded five of ULV's 10 kill in the fifth en route to their victory.
The Athenas (18-1, 10-1 SCIAC) remain at the top of the conference above La Verne and Cal Lutheran who are tied for second.
Next, CMS travels to Cal Lutheran on Friday night at 6 p.m. before hosting cross-campus rivals Pomona-Pitzer at 4 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 22 in Roberts Pavilion.
By Emily Nordhoff
Sports Information Director
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