Riverside Women’s Volleyball Upsets No. 19 Cypress

Photo by Bobby R. Hester
Photo by Bobby R. Hester

There were 36 total blocks recorded in an Orange Empire Conference (OEC) match between the Riverside City College women's volleyball team and the No. 19 Cypress College Chargers on Wednesday night. Riverside owned approximately 86 percent of those blocks proving their utter dominance at the net, thus paving the way to a 3-1 upset over the Chargers.

The unranked Tigers were not a favorite to take home a win, let alone a single set. They were fresh off of two solid conference matches as seen in a four-set victory over Golden West last Friday. Tonight, Riverside continued to trend in a positive direction.

Despite losing the third set, Riverside was in control for the majority of the match with the first two set scores reading 25-19 and 25-17 in the Tiger's favor. They sealed the deal in the fourth set with a 25-21 win.

Riverside dominated net play as seen in their 29 block assists and two solo stuffs. Sophomore tandem Lauren Dunmore and Rozarya Barrett formed a brick wall that was impossible to breach.  They each rose up for eight block assists, while sophomore outside Kiara Oregon provided a complimenting foundation with seven blocks. Dunmore and Barrett each recorded a solo stuff as well.

While the defense was strong, the offense was stronger. Sophomore outside hitter Julia Balancier was handed the majority of the hitting duties and took advantage of her opportunities. She recorded 21 kills on 44 attempts leading to a hitting percentage of .455. Her kill total and hitting percentage act as career-high marks.

Freshman outside hitter Vashti Elias-Romero notched nine kills to put her over the century mark for the season. She has recorded at least four kills in each game she has played and has logged nine or more kills in five contests.

Sophomore setter Taylor Gardner handled the majority of the setting duties with 28 assists which is three shy of her season-high mark. Freshman Robyn Collier recorded 14 assists. Sophomore libero Natalie Escher was as reliable as ever on the backline with 24 digs.

Riverside (8-4, 2-1 OEC) continue conference action at home on Friday, September 28 against the Santa Ana College Dons at 6 p.m.