Air Force Drops Three-Set Match to St. Mary's
Sep 8, 2013
MORAGA, Calif. - The Air Force volleyball team closed out its non-conference road trip to California with a 3-0 loss to St. Mary's on Saturday, Sept. 7, in Moraga, Calif. The Falcons fell to 1-5 on the season following a 25-17, 25-10, 25-13 loss to the host Gaels.
Sophomore Akokwe Clement led the Falcons with seven kills, while junior Ayesha Hein added five during a team-best .273 hitting performance. Sophomore Rachael Bradley Powers, who recorded a team-best 11 digs, was one of two Falcons to tally double-digit dig totals, as junior Hillary Keltner recorded another double-double with 16 assists and 10 digs. Hein also tallied a service ace and solo block, while sophomore Raquel Rosas collected a team-high two blocks.
St. Mary's took the opening point, but kills from Hein and Clement helped Air Force even the score at four. Hein recorded a service ace at the 7-6 mark, but the Gaels scored six of the next seven points to go ahead 12-8. Clement and Keltner added kills, but St. Mary's claimed the set by a 25-17 margin.
The Gaels scored 12 of the first 15 points to take early control, with a solo block from Hein and a kill from Clement breaking up the run. Hein and Rosas put down kills, but the home squad advanced its lead to 20-6. Clement put down a pair of scores and Hein scored the Falcons' 10th point, but Air Force fell 25-10.
St. Mary's took a 4-1 lead to open the final set, but kills from senior Cami Richan and Hein put the Falcons on the board. Two errors by the Gaels and a block from Richan and Rosas pulled the Falcons within two (8-6). The pair added kills, but St. Mary's scored seven straight points to take an 18-8 advantage. Clement and Richan combined for three kills, while Keltner and Rosas teamed up for a block, but the Falcons dropped the final set by a 25-13 score.
"SMC is a very experienced team," head coach Matt McShane said. "They serve and pass very well and make you earn every rally, every point. They might be the most consistent team we're playing. I really like how we fought at the end ... we made them earn their points."
Air Force continues a busy stretch of competition, as it travels to the East Coast for four contests in three days. The Falcons will travel to Annapolis, Md., to take on service academy rival Navy on Wednesday, Sept. 11, before facing second-ranked Stanford, Yale and Army at the Service Academy Challenge in Arlington, Va., on Thursday, Sept. 12, and Friday, Sept. 13.