Riverside went 1-1 on the on the week with a three-set victory over Saddleback to move into second-place in conference. However, a loss to top-ranked Irvine Valley may be the most striking showing from the Tigers so far this season.
With the No. 1 Irvine Valley College Laser currently owning a more than noteworthy status of dominance, Riverside played them tougher than any other team this season. Despite Riverside not winning the match, they accomplished something that only a handful of other squads have been able to accomplish in the past two years. The Tigers reigned supreme in the third set of the match by the final score of 25-23, thus making them one of seven teams to win a set against Irvine Valley in the last two seasons. The Tigers earned the third set victory with contributions from multiple sources. Sophomore outside Julia Balancier remained a strong presence by recording 12 kills accompanied by 12 digs. It is now her fifth-straight contest with double-digit kills and digs. Freshman Vashti Elias-Romero followed with nine kills and eight digs. Sophomore middle blocker Telanni Childs provided a much-needed spark for the Tigers that featured four total kills acting as a season-high. She added two crucial digs and one block assist. Freshman defensive specialist Sadie Arganda provided a solid hand on the back line. While the box score only reads a pair of digs for Arganda, her passing and receiving was on point thus creating offensive opportunities for others. The exact same can be said for sophomore libero Natalie Escher. She recorded a season-high 30 digs accompanied by a pair of assists. Sophomore setter Taylor Gardner paced the team in assists with 14.
Riverside (9-5, 4-2 OEC) will continue action on the road against the Fullerton College hornets on Wednesday, October 10 at 4 p.m.
The Tigers hosted the RCC Tournament and played four games that featured quality competition. Riverside went 1-3 on the weekend highlighted by a Friday morning victory over Grossmont by the final score of 15-11. The offense was spread out with sophomore Andrew Serrano pacing the squad with three netters. Ty Narramore, Ethan Saenz, Norbert Kovacs, and Kenny Wulf scored two goals each. Kovacs added three assists, while Wulf pocketed two steals.
Riverside (6-10, 1-1 OEC) will continue action on Friday, October 12 at home in a rematch against Grossmont.
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All photos compliments of Bobby R. Hester