MONTEREY PARK, CA — The East Los Angeles College volleyball team won a dramatic 5-set win in a rematch against the California Lutheran University JV team 20-25, 26-24, 25-9, 20-25, 15-13.
Cal Lutheran JV won a 5-set match 25-11, 25-22, 22-25, 20-25, 15-13 in Thousand Oaks on August 31. The Huskies were set to return the favor.
“They were not going to beat us twice, especially on our home court,” said ELAC freshman middle hitter Esther Duru. “We knew what we had to do, so we worked together and pushed through for the win.”
The Huskies improved to 6-4 overall in non-conference play and have won six of their previous seven games, losing only to the No. 6-ranked Mira Costa College (14-1).
Against the Cal Lutheran JV, Duru smacked down a team-high 19 kills (.364), had nine digs from all over the court, one service ace and two blocked shots.
ELAC sophomore outside hitter Angela Wade (Port of Los Angeles HS) had nine kills with a .421 clip and a team-high 24 digs.
Wade had two service aces as did freshman middle hitter Jasmine Andres (Bell HS) and freshman setter Taryn Higadera (Rosemead HS), who each had 13 digs.
ELAC hit .306, its sixth match this season greater than .300.
Set 1: The Regals started out on point and built leads of 16-11 and 20-14. The Huskies rallied for four unanswered points, which included a soft tip by Andres and a block by Higadera. The Regal JV team made it 21-18 and ELAC fought back to a 22-20 deficit. The Cal Lutheran JV closed out with three points and took the first set win.
Set 2: The Huskies scored three unanswered points to lead 3-0. The Regals closed the gap to one point, 4-3. The teams tied 12 times thereafter that culminated at 24-all. ELAC connected on a kill and had set point at 25-24. Duru followed with a tipped ball over the Regal front line and ELAC won the second frame by two points, 26-24.
Set 3: Vocal communication by the Huskies led to a 9-2 lead for ELAC. Each time the Regals attempted a comeback, the Huskies responded with more points. A Higadera tip to an empty spot gave the Huskies an 18-9 lead. ELAC would score seven unanswered points for the third frame 25-9 win.
Set 4: The Huskies fell behind 10-3. ELAC freshman setter Jennifer Montes De Oca (Legacy HS) walloped a kill to begin an ELAC rally. Higadera later connected on a let-ace and the Huskies trailed 18-14. ELAC closed the gap to two points twice, but the Regals held on for the five-point fourth-set win.
Set 5: The action-packed fifth set had the Huskies fall behind 5-1. A patient Husky rally tied it at seven-all. The crowd then chanted “Let’s Go Huskies!” Four ties ensued, the latter at 12-all. ELAC scored on an unexpected tip as the ball was inching over the net. It was 13-12 ELAC. Two more Husky points gave ELAC the set, match and win to the loud approval of the home crowd.
Up Next: The Huskies begin South Coast North Division play with a home game against Rio Hondo College (5-5) on Wednesday, Sept. 28 at 6 p.m. in the South Gym.
submitted by Tadzio Garcia