No. 12 Cal Poly beach volleyball won two of three matches on Monday, Mar. 21 at the Swanson Beach Volleyball Complex.
Cal Poly (10-8) defeated Boise State (11-8) by a score of 5-0 and No. 16 Arizona (7-4) 4-1 but fell 4-1 to No. 10 Cal (14-4).
The Mustangs took five of six games of the two-day tournament, and the sole loss came against Cal, who was the highest-ranked opponent they faced all weekend.
The Mustangs started off the day with a morning matchup against Boise State where Cal Poly came out on top 5-0.
The No. 5 tandem of sophomore Sam Strah and redshirt junior Delaney Peranich finished first with a 21-16 victory and a convincing 21-8 second set. The eight points were the lowest amount scored in the match.
The No. 1 tandem of redshirt senior Tia Miric and freshman Ella Connor continued the dominance with a win in their first set 22-20. This was the only match of game one that went past 21. Miric and Connor closed out the win and 5-0 sweep against Boise State in set number two.
Miric and Connor were named Big West pair of the week.
No. 10 Cal
Game two against Cal did not go the way of the Mustangs. While every game is important, a win over a higher-ranked opponent would have significantly helped the Mustangs move up in the rankings.
Redshirt junior Vanessa Roscoe got the nod with Ulrich in this faceoff as the No. 4 duo pushed set one into a tiebreaker with a 20-20 score, but fell 22-20. They dropped the next set too to give the Golden Bears a lead.
The No. 5, No. 2 and No. 1 duos were all unable to come out on top in back-and-forth matchups.
The only Cal Poly win came from the No. 3 pairing of Dueck and Hermstad, who won in three sets 21-18, 17-21, 15-9. Dueck and Hermstad are 11-1 on the season together and have won their last ten, which is good for the best record for a pair on the team.
Cal Poly’s final game of the tournament was a 4-1 victory over No. 16 Arizona.
No. 3 Dueck and Hermstad continued their streak and finished first with a win in two sets.
No. 5 Ulrich and Roscoe won 21-16 and 21-18 to put the Mustangs up two, which was followed by Miric and Connor, who clinched the win at No. 1 in two sets.
Despite already clinching the win, the No. 2 duo of Lombard and Ferch still went three sets. After dropping the first one 21-16, they won 21-15 to force a third set. Set three went to a long tiebreaker, where the Cal Poly duo came out on top 19-17.
This season, the team has a .722 winning percentage in the No. 1 and No. 3 spot but struggles at the No. 2 pairing, where the win percentage sits at .500.
After starting the season 2-6, Cal Poly has won eight of 10 to crawl back to a 10-8 record.
The Mustangs will look to continue to climb from the slow season start on Friday, Mar. 25 and Saturday, Mar. 26 at Long Beach for the first Big West tournament of the season. None of the other teams in the Big West are currently ranked.