Warriors' win streak ended

Trailing two sets to one and down 21-24 in the fourth set to Pasadena City College, the El Camino women’s volleyball team found itself in a spot it’s not used to being in. Trying desperately to keep its eight-game winning streak alive, the Warriors went up for the kill but the shot was blocked for the match point.

The Warriors (13-4) came into the game ranked No. 9 in the state but were upset by the Lancers (8-8) Friday night at EC as they fell 3-1 (23-25, 25-23, 23-25, 21-25) and saw their eight-game winning streak snapped.

“We have been doing little things right and we just didn’t make plays that we’ve been making all year,” coach Le Valley Pattison said. “There’s a lot of freshman out there so it’s a great learning experience.”

The Warriors are now 6-1 in the South Coast Conference and are in a three-way tie with Pasadena and Mt. San Antonio for first place.

Errors and miscues ultimately led to the Warriors demise and they would frequently gain momentum only to see it slip away due to an untimely mistake.

“We served a few too many balls out and let a few too many drop,” Pattison said.

The Warriors started off slow in the first set but managed to keep the score close throughout the match. After dropping the first set 25-23 the Warriors responded by taking the second set 25-23 to tie the score at one game a piece.

In a crucial third set, the Warriors led 23-22 but could not put away the Lancers, giving up a late kill and having their last shot blocked for the loss.

“It was a big eye-opener to let us know that we need to pick up our game fast,” sophomore setter SueKalena Tafao said. “This showed us that we need to come out of the gate strong and clean up our mistakes.”

Tafao had another huge game, racking up 18 kills and 12 digs. Tafao has become comfortable in her role as team leader and continues to set an example with her dominant play.
Freshman outside hitter Layne Thompson and middle blocker Kimberly Haney also had break-out games with 15 kills for Haney and 14 kills for Thompson.

“I’ve become more of an evident hitter,” Thompson said. “Someone who can really show up and get the balls down when needed.”

Thompson and Haney both entered the year as freshman but have become key contributors due to their size and strength around the net.

“I’m just getting more comfortable with the setters and we’re connecting more,” Haney said.

Next up, the Warriors will host Long Beach City College on Wednesday before heading into a critical conference match with Mt. San Antonio on Friday.