VOLLEYBALL ROUND UP: Riverside City College struggles against OEC

Written by: Dorothy McCarty
Stacy Soriano | Viewpoints

Stacy Soriano | Viewpoints

The No. 8 ranked Cypress College defeated the Riverside City College Volleyball team, 3-2, Oct. 16. The Tigers fell short of capturing its second win in five games.

Fighting hard to keep up with the Chargers, RCC won the third and fourth set of the match after dropping the first two.

Despite momentum being on the Tigers’ side headed into the final decisive set, RCC was unable to pull out the win losing the set 15-11.

The loss left RCC with a 1-4 conference record and kept the Cypress Chargers with a perfect Orange Empire Conference record of 5-0.

Prior to the game against Cypress, RCC was able to get its first win against an OEC team on Oct. 14 while visiting Saddleback.

The victory improved the Tigers’ overall record to 8-4. RCC defeated Saddleback 3-0 completing the Tigers’ fifth shut out win of the season.

Volleyball head coach Monica Hayes-Trainer stated she feels her team is “gaining confidence” as the season progresses.

“When they walk into the gym, they need to know they are the better team,” Hayes-Trainer said of her club.

The Tigers bounce back win was a sweep, but not an easy one. Saddleback maintained close scoring to the Tigers and forced RCC to commit several errors.

The Gauchos were never able to outscore the Tigers, but its defense forced RCC to make eight errors in the first set and five in the second.

Saddleback was also able to maintain a higher hitting percentage through the first sets, but the Tigers were still able to come out on top winning the first set 25-19 and the second set 25-20.

Although RCC displayed early offensive troubles within the beginning of the match, they zeroed in on previous mistakes and finished the match strong.

“Were still making a few silly errors that we need to put a stop to,” Hayes-Trainer continued to add on what she has seen of her team as well as improvements they are striving towards.

The Tigers, led in kills with 11, and points with 13 by middle hitter Lauren Reed, kept Saddleback at its lowest hitting percentage in the match at 0.107 percent. The Tigers were able to complete the sweep by winning the final set 25-14.

Despite the win against Saddleback, RCC has been struggling to win games. On Oct. 9 the team received its third straight loss. The Tigers lost the match 3-0.

The loss came at the hands of Irvine Valley College, the defending state champion and current top 25 ranked team in the California Community College Women’s Volleyball Coaches Association Poll.

The Lasers were the third OEC team to beat RCC, adding to the Tigers’ struggles against the conference.

The Tigers had trouble competing with opponents while searching for its first win in October. There have been particular struggles within the first sets of the last three outings where they have been outscored 75-44, including its match hosting Irvine Valley.

The Tigers had 10 errors in the first set, more than three times as many as the Lasers.

Despite the scoring woes, the Tigers were able to show some competitiveness in parts of the match.

RCC jumped out to a fast 7-1 lead to start the second set and was able to increase it to as much as 17-7 before Irvine Valley composed itself, tied the set at 23-23, and won 25-20.

RCC was able to open the final set against the Lasers strongly. The Tigers cut back on errors, only having four within the set, and were able to tie Irvine Valley six times.

The third set remained close in score with three lead changes until the Lasers scored eleven unanswered points and closed out the set 25-14.

Nyomi Ward, freshman middle blocker, led RCC with eight kills and 12 points in the losing outing. Ward also contributed with three solo blocks and two block assists.