The Mustangs snapped their losing streak with a five-set victory over UC Riverside at Mott Gym on Friday and recorded another five-set win against Cal State Fullerton the following night.
Head coach Sam Crosson was pleased with his squad’s improvement in serving and passing, in addition to the strides made with their mental fortitude.
“We’re handling the things that don’t go our way, better on the court,” Crosson said. “Their mental ability has improved, in which case I think the performance and execution improves along with it.”
The team was certainly resilient this past weekend. The Mustangs were able to overcome a 2-1 deficit to win 3-2 in a tight fifth set on Friday against UC Riverside, and then bounced back from a poor fourth set to defeat Cal State Fullerton on Saturday.
While the Mustangs first victory in nearly two months helped morale, the victory against a much tougher Cal State Fullerton squad (11-11, 5-4 Big West) was the more significant confidence boost.
“It validated for them that Friday wasn’t just a random occurrence, in terms of wins because it was Riverside,” Crosson said. “Fullerton’s a good team and is in that middle group in terms of conference wins and losses this year.”
The team will travel to Santa Barbara this Saturday for a rematch with UC Santa Barbara, who defeated the Mustangs in straight sets back in September behind a dominating 15-kill performance from junior Katey Thompson. However after recording a couple of wins, Cal Poly is playing with more self reliance and is looking for a better showing against its rivals this time around.
“It’s certainly motivating and uplifting for them and their spirits to start the second round of conference,” Crosson said of his team’s attitude going forward. “They’re excited and ready to go.”
James Corbett and Jefferson P. Nolan contributed to this article.