Game Recap By Mason Nesbitt, TMU Sports Information Director
This was a different kind of test for a team that’s already checked so many boxes.
The Master’s University women’s volleyball team has won in-state and out-of-state, against a ranked opponent and against those hoping to climb the ranks, versus conference and non-conference foes.
Thursday night inside the MacArthur Center, the Mustangs refused to look ahead to a massive Golden State Athletic Conference showdown this weekend, instead focusing all their energy on the University of Saint Katherine.
It showed in a 3-0 win, by scores of 25-19, 25-13 and 25-16.
“Any time we have a home game, we want to defend our court,” said coach Allan Vince. “We need to make sure our side is taken care of because sometimes your biggest opponent can be yourself.”
The Mustangs are now 13-3, and they continue to back up the No. 25 national ranking bestowed on them last week. Now, they can turn their eyes to a bout with No. 7 Westmont College on Saturday night at TMU.
“From what I’ve seen so far, the girls have not stepped back from playing a big opponent,” Vince said, “and they’ve come through with some big wins, so our mindset feye-popping is to play together and to be sharp.”
Thursday’s individual stats weren’t eye popping. But that’s what happens when you take care of business in such tidy fashion.
Jane Cisar led the way, as she often has, with eight kills on 13 attempts. Madi Fay followed with seven kills on 14 attempts with just one error. Four more Mustangs had at least five kills as part of an attack that hit at a .456 clip for the night.
On that note, Master’s has been one of the best offensive clubs in the GSAC to this point. The Mustangs are second in the conference with a .229 hitting percentage. They’ll see the No. 1 team in that category up close Saturday. The Warriors (11-1) are hitting .268, as well as leading the GSAC in nearly every major category.
But a test of this magnitude won’t necessarily be new to a Mustang club that went to the Hampton Inn Classic in Missouri earlier this month and played four ranked teams, three in the top five. Master’s beat No. 14 Columbia College to help vault it into the NAIA rankings for the first time since 2015.
Thursday was a matter of living out the ultimate sports cliché: take the season one match at a time.
Master’s built a 19-10 lead in set one before the Firebirds went on a 6-1 run to make it interesting. But the Mustangs answered with a 3-0 run and kills from Fay and Autumn Stevens eventually ended the frame.
Stevens was part of a match-sealing spurt in the third set. Her kill was the final point in a 9-2 Master’s run that turned what was a 12-12 set into a runaway.
Kayla Sims had 16 assists and Sarah Park had 13. Sixteen Mustangs saw action.
Here’s the box score.