Sonoma State University’s Woman’s Volleyball team is coming off their most memorable season in school history after being crowned champions of the California Collegiate Athletic Association last season for the first time in the seventeen years the school has been in the conference. Now, there is nothing they want more than to regain their title. The team boasted a 23-7 overall record and finished with the CCAA conference championship, the NCAA west region championship, and an appearance in the Women’s Division II NCAA Elite Eight tournament in Louisville, Kentucky. All firsts for the university.
The Seawolves will try to build off this historic run in 2015. Seniors Caylie Seitz and Madelyn Densberger look to lead SSU all the way to the first ever CCAA women’s volleyball tournament hosted by UC San Diego in La Jolla, California at the end of the season.
Senior outside hitter Caylie Seitz, from Santa Rosa, California, looks to follow in the footsteps of her former teammate and Seawolves legend Kelsey Hull. Hull was the first ever Sonoma State woman to be named CCAA Female Athlete of the Year.
Even though these will be hard shoes to fill, Seitz is no amateur on the volleyball court. Seitz is a two-time AVCA All-American and was named the 2013 season’s most valuable player by the CCAA.
Seitz led the CCAA with a 4.39 kill-per-set average, which was ranked seventh best in the nation last year. She finished with double digit kills in 28 of the teams 30 matches. Seitz looks to continue her great run in a Seawolves uniform by pairing up with her younger sister Calan, who is a Sophomore setter for the team this season.
In August, the CCAA released its preseason coaches poll and the Seawolves received the most votes for first place with seven but were picked to place second with 134 points just behind women’s volleyball perennial powerhouse Cal State San Bernadino who received 136 points in the poll.
Later in August, the NCAA released its Division II preseason coaches poll and had the Seawolves ranked 12 overall in the nation ahead of Cal State San Bernadino who was ranked 19 overall. The 12 overall ranking is the highest overall ranking in school history.
The Seawolves began their title defense with a trip to Oahu, Hawaii where they played in the Hawaii Invitational this past week. The Seawolves split the first two games of the trip after they dropped the opener against the Hawaii Pacific Sharks in three sets. The girls then came out on fire against Saint Martins University in the second day of the Invitational and won the game in three sets.
That led to the premier matchup of the trip where the number 12 ranked Seawolves squared off against the the number 11 ranked BYU-Hawaii Seasiders on the third day of the Hawaii invitational in Laie, Hawaii.
SSU started off strong, taking the first set 25-17, when things took a turn for the worse.They dropped the next two sets 25-22 and 25-23. The fourth set went back and back but the Seawolves would not go down without a fight, winning the fourth set 25-22.
With the match tied 2-2,the Seawolves went on a 7-2 run to finish off the Seasiders in the fifth set and win the match. Caylie Seitz led the Seawolves to victory with a match high 23 kills.
Sonoma State lost the final game of the trip to undefeated Chaminade University in four sets. They finished the trip with a 2-2 record.
The Seawolves will come back to California and prepare to face off against Dominican University, Friday, Sept. 11 in San Rafael, California. The defending champs will return to play on their home court at SSU on Saturday, Sept. 12 at 7 p.m. against Holy Names University.