Pepperdine Rolls Past Bucknell in Three Sets
Lexi Weldon posts a match-high eight kills in victory over the Bison.
Oct. 8, 2012
MALIBU, Calif. - The #24 Pepperdine women's volleyball team opened its three-match week with a convincing three-set shutout over Bucknell on Monday evening. Taylor Racich led the Waves with seven kills and four aces, while Lexi Weldon came off the bench with a match-high eight kills.
The Waves, now 12-7 overall, won by set scores of 25-6, 25-14, 25-17.
Racich’s (Santa Barbara, Calif./Dos Pueblos HS) hard-to-handle jump serve kept the Bison (6-14) on their toes as Pepperdine scored a total of 16 points with the lefty at the line. Even more impressive, the freshman did not miss a single serve in her match-high 19 attempts
She added nine digs and three blocks on the defensive end to finish the night with 12.5 points.
Weldon (Tallahassee, Fla./Chiles HS) started the second and third sets for Pepperdine and totaled eight kills earned on a career-high .357 (8-3-14) hitting percentage.
Victoria Adelhelm, (Rancho Santa Fe, Calif./Santa Fe Christian) who exited the match after the second set, posted seven kills on nine errorless attacks.
The Waves’ offensive assault was further bolstered by Emily Cook (Huntington Beach, Calif./Murrieta Valley HS), Kellie Woolever (Long Beach, Calif./Woodrow Wilson HS) and Alyssa Mason (Redlands, Calif./Redlands Valley East HS) who all handed in six kills apiece.
As a team, Pepperdine out-killed the Bison 46-19 and held the visitors to just a .013 (19 kills-18 errors-78 attempts) hitting percentage. Meanwhile, the Waves hit at an unstoppable .439 (46-10-82) clip.
In the opening frame, the home team scored 10 unanswered points – all with Racich serving – to take a 15-4 lead. Although Bucknell was able to sideout, all the momentum was rolling in the Waves’ favor as they went on to win 25-6. Mason was a perfect 3-for-3 on the attack, while Adelhelm tallied three kills on four swings.
Cook dominated the second frame, pounding home five kills on eight attacks. Adelhelm tacked on four more kills to her total and Pepperdine took the set 25-14.
With a few changes to the lineup, the Waves took a while to find their rhythm in set three. Behind 1-6, Pepperdine steadily narrowed the gap until Racich served the Waves back into the lead, 10-8. The team took back full control of the stanza with an 8-0 run and Woolever clinched the set and the match with a kill to put point No. 25 on the board.
Weldon earned five of her eight kills in the third set.
Head coach Nina Matthies was impressed with her bench’s performance tonight:
"We have been in so many tight matches this year and it seems like when I put them (non-starters) in they haven’t been able to produce and make mistakes because they can’t get into a rhythm with the setter. I thought tonight allowed them to get into a rhythm with the setter and give themselves a little confidence. Mission accomplished. I also thought the freshmen played really well. They have been playing well and we are going to need them down the road."
Woolever quarterbacked the offense with 34 assists and libero Michaela Christiaansen (Tucson, Ariz./Ironwood Ridge HS) posted eight digs and a pair of service aces.
Pepperdine resumes West Coast Conference action on Thursday at home with a 7 p.m. contest versus San Francisco. The week closes with a 1 p.m. matchup against Santa Clara on Saturday.