The No.12 Cal Poly volleyball team continued its hot streak by sweeping Blue Green rival UC Santa Barbara (25-14, 25-22, 25-19) on Friday, Oct. 12 in Mott Athletics Center (building 42).
With the win, the Mustangs (17-1,7-0) remain undefeated in Big West Conference play and extended their program record home winning streak to 18 matches. While the Mustangs remain in first place, UC Santa Barbara (12-8, 4-4) remains in fourth place.
“It really proves that our hard work is paying off ’cause we worked our butts off for this and it’s awesome,” freshman middle blocker Meredith Phillips said.
The team continues to rely on its “execution over emotion” mantra by focusing on one game at a time.
“It certainly is that midway point of conference where you can start getting distracted by rankings or where you’re at or RPI or things like that,” head coach Sam Crosson said. “This group has been resilient just being able to take in what’s in the moment and the result of that tonight was overall a good consistent execution match for us.”
Cal Poly was led by its younger cast as freshman setter Avalon DeNecochea recorded her first career double-double with a team-leading 36 assists to go along with 15 digs. Phillips led the offensive attack and tied a career high with a team-leading 12 kills.
“Anybody can beat anybody on any given day but we just take it one game at a time, and we all want it so badly, we all want to win and we all want to be apart of this team and that’s what makes it so special, because we have that bond on and off the court,” Phillips said.
Dating back to 2016, Cal Poly has won 24 consecutive Big West Conference games. At 17-1 the team is just one win away from matching the best start in program history, which was set by the 1985 team.
“Records and stuff like that for me are more for the players and the fans. I think it’s awesome to have a home environment like Mott,” Crosson said. “The amount of support we have gotten locally and from the department, students and campus community has been phenomenal.”
Even though the team has not lost a match in more than a month, Crosson said there is still room for improvement.
Even though the team has not lost a match in more than a month, Crosson said there is still room for improvement
“I think it’s awesome because it just sets the tone for our program that we are never going to be satisfied,” Crosson said. “It would be real easy to go in there right now and believe the hype or the rankings and make the assumption or expectation that we’re going to win.”
Next, the Mustangs will begin a three-game road trip starting with a match against CSUN on Friday, Oct. 19 at 7 p.m., which will be televised on ESPN 3.