TOPEKA, Kan. - With solid team hitting and blocking, No. 15 Western Washington swept Dowling 30-17, 30-28, 30-19 in the third quarterfinal of the NCAA Women’s Volleyball National Championship in Washburn’s Lee Arena.
The Vikings (25-4) will play the winner of the Washburn/Tampa match Friday at 6:30 p.m. Central.
Angie Alvord led the team with 16 kills and committed just one error for a .625 attack percentage for the Vikings. Jaime Anderson had 13 kills and Tiana Roma added 10.
Katie Robinson had 47 assists as she set her team to a .359 attack percentage. The Viking defense was led by Courtney Schneider with 21 digs and Emily Castro and Allison Gotz with 11 each.
Justyna Michon was the only Goldon Lion to reach double figures in kills as she had 16 and hit .323 on the night. Jessica Gall led the Dowling back row with 14 digs and Ptrycja Klekotka had 11.
After winning easily in game one, the Vikings had to come back in the second game to get a win. After an 11-11 tie, Dowling went ahead 18-14 on a kill from Kyla Muela. The Vikings fought back to tie the match at 18-18.
Dowling regained the lead later in the game and was looking to tie the match score with a 27-24 lead late. WWU went on a 5-0 run, capped by a kill from Anderson and then a Dowling attack error, to force game point at 29-27. The Lions got within one with a kill from Klekotka but Anderson’s kill clinched the game for WWU.
“We played real well and started believing in ourselves,” said Michon. “We just let down.”
The Vikings carried their momentum into the third game and built leads of 13-5, 19-9 and 26-14. Angie Alvord later won the match for the Vikings with a kill.
“Coming back like we did and holding our composure, I think it was huge for us,” said Castro, who just missed a double-double with nine kills to go with her 11 digs.
“We came with a complete game and we’re just looking forward to the final four. Wow,” said Western Washington head coach Flick.