Arizona volleyball has split weekend in Hawaii
Arizona indoor volleyball beat Northwestern and Portland State, then lost to No. 10 Hawaii on its trip to the Aloha State.
The Wildcats (7-2) lost to the Rainbow Wahine 1-3 to wrap up their competition at the Outrigger Hotels and Resorts Challenge. The UA lost the first set 25-20, the second set 25-17, the third set 25-22 and the fourth set 23-25.
Head coach Dave Rubio said while he never wants to lose, he is proud of how the team fought against Hawaii and is looking forward to moving on.
“The thing that has made me the most excited about this group is the competitive spirit they have,” Rubio said.
Tyler Baker/The Daily Wildcat UA outside hitter Taylor Arizobal goes to spike the ball against EKU on Saturday, Sept. 7, 2013.
Junior outside hitter Madi Kingdon had 19 kills and 12 digs in the match, while senior outside hitter Emily Hartong led the way for Hawaii with a match-high 21 kills and had a double-double 13 digs. Arizona freshman setter Penina Snuka had 37 assists and five digs.
Arizona had to play in the tournament without junior outside hitter Jane Croson, a transfer from Hawaii who sat out this tournament as an agreement, which allowed her to transfer. So far this season, Croson is second on the team with 65 kills and 71 total points.
The first match of the tournament was on Thursday against the Big Ten’s Northwestern Wildcats. The Wildcats won the match 3-1.
Kingdon had a double-double with 18 kills and 21 digs. Arizona won the first set 25-22, lost the second set 27-25, won the third set 25-20 and won the fourth and final set to take the match 25-19.
Sophomore middle blocker Halli Amaro came up big offensively with 13 kills. Snuka also had 48 assists, nine digs, three kills and one block.
Junior outside hitter Shaquillah Torres helped fill in for Croson, Rubio said. Torres had 12 kills, four digs and a block.
“I thought they were terrific, I was really proud on how the players responded this weekend,” Rubio said. “Shaq [Torres] really played well. She found a way to get the job done. I was really proud on how she handled her position. The team really played well without having Jane [Croson].”
On Friday, the Wildcats beat the Portland State Vikings 3-1. Arizona had a season high 20.5 blocks.
Arizona lost the first set 25-22, then won the next three in a row — 25-17, 25-19 and 31-29. The 20.5 blocks were the most the Wildcats have had in a match since the UA had 21 blocks against ASU on Sept. 22, 2006.
“Our blocking in general, we’ve been working a lot on it,” Rubio said. “The last few weeks we’ve had a pretty good idea of what we’re trying to do. Our middles have been much better.”
Kingdon had a season-high 22 kills, 17 digs and six blocks. Sophomore middle blocker Olivia Magill had a career-high 10 blocks and had 12 kills. Snuka had a double-double with 38 assists and 10 digs.
Arizona plays Loyola Maryland, Wofford and UC Santa Barbara this weekend in the Wildcat classic tournament at home.
—Follow Derek Evans @DerekEvans20