Waves Finish Second at Pepperdine Asics Classic

Gaby Palmeri
Aug. 30, 2014

Tournament Central

Box Score: Pepperdine 3, Nevada 2 Get Acrobat Reader | Final Stats

Box Score: Oral Roberts 3, Pepperdine 1 Get Acrobat Reader Final Stats |  Photo Gallery 

MALIBU, Calif. - The Pepperdine women's volleyball team finished in second place at the Asics Classic to open the 2014 season. The Waves held off Nevada 3-2 in their first match of the day before falling to Oral Roberts 3-1 in the tournament finale.

Becca Strehlow (Long Beach, Calif./Woodrow Wilson HS), who earned a triple-double vs. the Wolf Pack and ended the weekend averaging 2.17 kills, 5.67 assists and 3.08 digs, was selected to the all-tournament team.

Nevada won the three-way tiebreaker between the Waves and Oral Roberts, all with a  2-1 record, to take home the team title. Pepperdine placed second, followed by the Golden Eagles and South Alabama.

The Waves opened action on Saturday with a 3-2 (25-17, 25-23, 21-25, 18-25, 15-7) victory against Nevada. Jillian Bergeson (Friendswood, Texas/Friendswood HS) paced Pepperdine with 17 kills in the contest, followed by Strehlow with 12 and Katie Messing (The Woodlands, Texas/The Woodlands HS) with 11.

Strehlow was impressive in all categories and charted her second career triple-double. In addition to her 12 kills, the junior also tallied 26 assists and a team-leading 16 digs.

Although the Waves let a two-set lead slip away against a very persistent Nevada squad, Pepperdine regained control in the fifth. With eight kills, compared to just two from the Wolf Pack, the Waves handily won 15-7 to clinch the victory.

Despite a quick turnaround between matches, the Waves dominated their first set against Oral Roberts. Led by Bergeson's six kills on eight errorless swings, Pepperdine easily walked away with the 25-13 win.

As a team, the Waves swung at a sizzling .636 (15 kills-1 errors-22 attempts) hitting percentage to control the tempo.

Pepperdine continued to play strong offensively at the net, but struggled to contain the Golden Eagles' Laura Milos. The freshman standout averaged 5.73 kills/set this weekend, despite recording a lack-luster five put aways in her debut vs. Nevada while battling illness on Friday. She followed that up with 29 kills versus both South Alabama and the Waves.

In the end, Oral Roberts edged Pepperdine in the final three sets to win 13-25, 25-23, 25-23, 25-23.

Gaby Palmeri (Davis, Calif./St. Francis HS) delivered a career-best performance versus ORU, sending down 15 kills on 30 attempts and no errors.

Bergeson once again paced the offense with 17 kills and averaged a team-best 3.42 kills/set on the weekend. She also picked up 11 digs for her second double-double of the day.

Allie Loitz (Bonita, Calif./Bonita Vista HS) came off the bench with an error-free 6-for-8 effort on the attack, while Samantha Cash (San Diego, Calif./Canyon Crest Academy) led the defense with four blocks. Cash had 11 roofs on the weekend.

Pepperdine, with a 2-1 record, continues the tournament season next weekend with the UC Irvine Invitational. The Waves face Utah State and the hosting Anteaters on Sept. 5, and conclude the tournament on Sept. 6 versus Idaho.

Asics Classic Standings
1. Nevada
2. Pepperdine
3. Oral Roberts
4. South Alabama

All-Tournament Team
Laura Milos (Oral Roberts)
Becca Strehlow (Pepperdine)
Sam Willoughby (Nevada)
Nikki Gittens (South Alabama)



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