Women’s volleyball sweeps Southwestern in home opener

volleyball

Senior middle blocker Lauren Friend jumps to block the ball against Southwestern University Sept. 4. Photo by Bonnie Cash

In the first home match of the season Sept. 4, the Chapman women’s volleyball team put in an assertive performance against Southwestern University.

Chapman swept Southwestern in straight sets, marking Chapman’s fourth three-set sweep of the season.

“It feels really good (to win), especially because the team has been working so hard these past couple weeks,” said freshman setter Sophie Srivastava. “We’ve been working a lot on our blocking, and also we’ve done a lot of team bonding activities.”

The Panthers began the match strong thanks to of Courtney Justus, senior outside hitter, and Jessi Lumsden, freshman outside hitter, who had seven and eight kills, respectively. Chapman picked up 41 kills, compared to Southwestern’s 30.

Head coach Mary Cahill said she appreciated Chapman’s defensive tactics.

“(Southwestern is) a difficult team to play because they move the ball around a lot, so (the Chapman team) gets frustrated as far as blocking goes, but I thought that we did really well on defense against different shots,” Cahill said.

Communication was a key factor in the Panthers’ win, Cahill said.

After a tournament Sept. 1, the team’s extensive time together allowed them to play in a more cohesive fashion, she said.

“We all came together a lot and worked hard these last practices for the tournament this weekend,” Srivastava said. “Everybody (on the team) is supporting each other. Nobody is putting each other down.”

Chapman takes on Redlands in an at-home conference match Sept. 14 at 7 p.m.