With the sweet taste of a CCAA and West Region Championship still lingering on their palettes, the Sonoma State University women’s volleyball team took to the court in hopes of defending its titles and possibly gaining a new one, a National Championship.
Last week, the 22-ranked Seawolves added two important wins to their existing 2-2 record with a hard fought victory over the Dominican Penguins (14-25, 25-20, 25-17, 20-25, 15-8) Friday and a sweep of the Holy Names Hawks (25-20, 25-11, 25-8) on Saturday.
Madelyn Densberger accounted for 26 of her team’s 64 total kills in the game against the Penguins, a career high for the senior outside hitter.
She also led the team with 19 digs. Sophomore setter Courtney Seda came in close second behind her with 16 digs.
After dropping the first set 25-14, SSU showed resilience, taking the next two sets 25-20 and 25-17.
During both sets, the Seawolves obtained hitting percentages of .375 and .205, compared to the Penguins’ .229 and .167 percentages.
Both defenses battled in the fourth set; Neither team recorded over a .200 hitting percentage, but it was Dominican that forced a fifth set with a 25-20 finish.
That was when the Seawolves exploded. They landed 10 kills in 23 total attempts, while their competitors only managed to land five in 21 attempts. It was a kill by Caylie Seitz, which was set up by Seda, that ended the game and improved SSU’s record to 3-2.
The following night, the Seawolves entered the Wolves’ Den, facing the Hawks of Holy Names in their 2015 home opener.
The 200-plus fans that packed the stands let out an excited and communal roar after Caylie Seitz spiked the ball over the net for the first point of the game.
From then on, it was smooth sailing for the Seawolves.
Not once during any of the three sets did the Hawks lead in points. The Seawolves ended the game with more than double the amount of kills and hitting percentage than Holy Names.
The first set was the closest for the Hawks.
Although they possessed a higher hitting percentage in that set, Sonoma’s 20 kills and three service errors is what put the Seawolves on top 25-20.
SSU ran away with the second and third set, winning by a 14 and 17-point margin in each.
If the impressive victory over the Hawks was not already enough, the Seawolves recorded a .536 hitting percentage as a team, a new program record for best team percentage in a single game, topping a .529 effort in a 3-0 win just last year against Cal State L.A. on Oct. 18, 2014.
Leading the violent attack were seniors Seitz and Densberger, who recorded 17 and 13 kills respectively.
Sophomore Calan Seitz assisted 30 of the team’s 59 total kills and possessed three service aces as well.
On the defensive side, Kaitlyn Connolly led with 16 digs. Densberger trailed just behind her with eight digs.
After steaming past Holy Names, the Seawolves improved to 4-2 on the season while the Hawks fell to 1-6.
The Seawolves will take on four CCAA opponents on the road before returning home to play the new addition to the conference, Cal State San Marcos, on Sept. 29 at 4 p.m.