The UCSB women’s volleyball team (2-6) dropped its Saturday morning match with New Mexico State (6-2) in four sets of 25-20, 25-20, 16-25, 25-23.
Michelle Ohwobete led the way with 11 kills and was a dig short of her second double-double of the weekend with nine.
Tallulah Froley and Briana McKnight each sent down nine kills, with McKnight swinging a potent .471 clip and adding 11 digs and a solo block. Froley had three total blocks, one of which was solo as well.
Mehana Ma’a led the setting efforts with 21 assists and added three digs.
Deni Wilson had nine kills on a very efficient .692 line and added three total blocks as well.
The Aggies led the first set from 2-1 on as they hit a match-high .344 clip in their revenge game with the Gauchos. The lead grew to as many as seven at 14-7, but UCSB began to cut away towards the end, getting to within two points at 21-19. Unfortunately, the Gauchos could not sideout at the end of the set.
The second set was a back-and-forth affair early that saw eight ties and five lead changes, all of which took place before the two teams arrived at 15 apiece. From there New Mexico State closed out the set on a 10-5 run to go up two sets to none.
The third set was all Gauchos, as the visiting team swung a ridiculous .559 team clip and converted on 13-of-17 sideout attempts. They led the entire way, stretching it out the lead to as many as 12 at 19-7 in a set that saw them collect 20 kills. Ohwobete picked up six of her 11 on a 6-0-8 (.750) line and McKnight notched five on a 5-0-10 (.500) line.
The fourth and final set saw the Aggies jump ahead early and look to be running away with it as they held a seven point advantage at 12-5. With their backs against the wall, the Gauchos pushed and began to chip away at the lead going on a 6-1 run that was fueled by Ohwobete and Wilson. Down 22-18, Farmer went on an absolute tear, sending down four straight kills in a row to tie the match. An Aggie attack error put UCSB in front 23-22 but a pair of Gaucho errors and an overpass kill sealed the win for New Mexico State.
The Gauchos now head home for the Thunderdome Classic next weekend where they will host Georgetown for a pair of matches. Friday’s match marks the team’s home opener.
Daniel Moebus-Bowles writes about sports for UCSB.