The kids are alright.
Youth was served as UC Santa Cruz women's volleyball team opened their 2015 season by hosting their annual Slugfest tournament and freshmen contributed to give the Banana Slugs a 3-1 start to begin the year.
The Slugs played host to Mills College, William Jessup, Redlands, and Lewis and Clark.
Tatum Novitzky led UCSC with 44 kills in four games without any errors, hitting .512 with 3 solo blocks. Fellow freshman Sierra Yuen hit .233 and added 2 solo blocks and 7 block assists. Backup setter Faylenn McDonough tied with a team-high six service aces to go with 32 assists on the weekend.
On Friday, the Slugs opened with a straight-set victory over Nor Cal rivals Mills. UCSC hit .319 and delivered 14 service aces.
The second match saw Lewis and Clark upset the Slugs in straight sets. Twice the Slugs had a game won before the Pioneers rallied to snatch victory. Despite outhitting the Pioneers .145 to .129, Lewis and Clark used a 7-3 edge in aces and took advantage of their host's mistakes to pull off the victory.
On Saturday UCSC rebounded to sweep both two games. Against Redlands, the Slugs hit .250 and outscored the Bulldogs in aces 8-0.
In the finale against William Jessup, senior Kellie Graves hit .529 with 11 kills and Novitzky hit .469 with 15 kills.
UC Santa Cruz goes to Thousand Oaks next weekend to take part in Cal Lutheran's Cal Lu Fornia tournament.
SLUGFEST ALL TOURNAMENT FIRST TEAM
Alex Navarro- Lewis & Clark College
Julia Somers- Lewis & Clark College
Tatum Novitzky-UC Santa Cruz
Madison Waddell-UC Santa Cruz
Mikayla Lopez- Lewis & Clark College
Kortney Meyer- Lewis & Clark College
Kellie Graves-UC Santa Cruz
Kassidy Heuvelhorst-William Jessup