UCSC traveled down south for the 3rd weekend in a row to compete in the La Verne Tournament. Up first for the Slugs was the University of Redlands. It was a tough match and Redlands barely came out with the win after 5 close games (30-22, 20-30, 30-32, 30-22, 11-15). Leading for the Slugs was Senior Outside Hitter Gillian McGraw who racked up an impressive 18 kills, 7 digs and 3 blocks. Junior Libero Melinda Tom joined the 30 dig club once again racking up 34 digs for the match.
Next up was the University of La Verne currently ranked #9 in the country. The Slugs fought back after losing the first game 13-30 and then earned some respect losing 2 close games 25-30, 23-30. Leading for the Slugs was Senior Outside Hitter Nicole Payne who led with 6 kills, 10 digs and 2 blocks.
On Saturday, UCSC competed against DIII Elmhurst College from Chicago, IL and lost in 4 games (28-30, 30-18, 28-30, 25-30). Leading for the Slugs was Senior Outside Hitter Gillian McGraw who had 13 kills 4 digs and 4 blocks, Senior Outside Hitter Nicole Payne who had 10 kills, 13 digs, 2 aces and 1 block.
The last and most important match of the tournament was against DIII Independent rival Chapman University. The Slugs fought hard refusing to lose and after a long, competitive match, UCSC came out with the win in 5 games (30-20, 28-30, 27-30, 30-28, 15-12). The Slugs played their best match of the season posting some impressive numbers. Freshman Middle Blocker Ariel Ajagu led the team with 14 kills and 4 blocks. Outstanding performances from Gilly McGraw who had 12 kills, 7 digs, 3 blocks and 1 ace, Nicole Payne who had 11 kills, 18 digs, 8 aces and 5 blocks, Daniella Reagan who had 11 kills and 6 blocks, Megan Wisniewski who had 8 kills 4 blocks and 2 digs, Melinda Tom with 32 digs and 3 aces, and Amy Knight with 54 assists, 9 digs and 1 block.
After being on the road for 4 straight weeks, the Slugs host their first home game of the season on Wednesday, September 26th against Bethany College from Scotts Valley at 7pm in the East Field House.