Oct. 25, 2007
Portland, OR - The Gael's serving proved to be to much for the Pilots, as Saint Mary's recorded 16 aces on the night, while defeating Portland 26-30, 30-17, 30-23, 30-20. Junior Nikki Gonzales recorded a career and team-high seven aces on the night, while sophomore Alita Fisher chipped in a career-high five aces and 27 digs. Megan York recorded another double-double on the year, tallying a match-high 19 kills and 18 digs. Taylor Groess had another impressive night for the Gaels, totaling 16 kills on 31 swings for a .452 hitting percentage. The Pilots were led by Ashley Grayson with 15 kills and .481 hitting efficiency.
Portland took hold of game one early, scoring four straight to take a 6-3 lead over the Gaels. Freshman libero Danielle Dupar tallied one ace in the run, while her Pilot counterparts added two kills. Alita Fisher would step up to the line with Gaels down 8-11, and would serve five straight points to give Saint Mary's the lead at 14-11. Portland would recapture the lead, scoring five consecutive points to give them a two point lead at 16-14. From that point on both teams would exchange points back and forth, until the Pilots forced the Gaels into their first timeout at 18-21. Portland continued to keep the pressure on the Gaels, forcing Saint Mary's into four errors, and taking a 25-20 advantage. Although the Gaels would make a late surge in the game, they would fall to the Pilots 26-30 in game one.
Freshman Megan York was the only Gael that was able to execute offensively in the game for the Gaels, recording five kills with .444 hitting efficiency. The Pilots recorded 16 kills to the Gaels 10, while recording a .269 hitting percentage to Saint Mary's .081 mark.
The Gaels turned things around in game two, taking a 6-1 lead over the Pilots. Saint Mary's tallied two aces in the first six points, with York and Groess each adding one apiece. The Gaels would continue on their hot-streak, going on a seven point run to win game two, 30-17. Junior Taylor Groess exploded in the game for the Gaels, recording seven kills.
Junior Nikki Gonzaels chipped in two aces to begin game three for the Gaels, as Saint Mary's would go on to defeat the Pilots 30-23. Saint Mary's surged to a 7-1 lead to start the game, forcing Portland into a quick timeout. Freshman Shannon Lowell found her rhythm in the game, chipping in three kills in the first seven points. Saint Mary's would keep the momentum throughout the rest of the set, defeating Portland in game two, 30-23.
In the fourth game it was Gaels all the way, as Saint Mary's recorded a 30-18 defeat over the Pilots. Saint Mary's took control from the start, as Fisher added two aces and York recorded two kills at the beginning of game four. Nikki Gonzales continued to terrorize Portland behind the service line, tallying two of her seven aces in a five point serving run, giving the Gaels a 20-10 lead over the Pilots. The Gaels did not let down the rest of the way, winning game four decisively, 30-18.
The Gaels improve to 4-4 in West Coast Conference play and 12-8 overall. Saint Mary's continues play on the road as they travel to Spokanne, WA to face the Gonzaga Bulldogs on Saturday, October 27 at 5:00 PM.