Pepperdine Women’s Volleyball huddles around Head Coach Scott Wong after Pepperdine called a timeout at Firestone Fieldhouse in a game against LMU on Nov. 11. The Waves lost to the Lions 3-1. Photos by Chloe Chan
Pepperdine Women’s Volleyball lost to Loyola Marymount University 3-1 on Nov. 11 at Firestone Fieldhouse. The Waves are now 18-8 on the season with a 9-6 against conference rivals. LMU’s win also earned them 1.5 points in the PCH Cup.
The Waves fell behind 4-0 at the start of the first set but were able to recover and keep the game close all the way through. With Pepperdine having a 19-18 lead, the Waves scored six unanswered points to win the first set.
Overall, three Waves had double digit kills during the game as Chillingworth, Hellmuth and Emma Ammerman, junior outside and opposite hitter, had 12, 16 and 11 kills respectively.
Chillingworth, Hellmuth and junior middle blocker Meg Brown are in the top 10 in kills in the West Coast Conference.
“It’s amazing to get to set them and know they’re going to get the ball away from me,” senior setter Isabel Zelaya said.
After winning the first set, Pepperdine had a 13-10 lead in the second, but LMU scored nine straight points and ended up winning the set 25-20. The Lions won the third set 25-17 and the fourth set 25-16 to secure the win. This is the second time LMU has beaten Pepperdine in women’s volleyball this season.
“I think we did a good job scouting LMU and knowing what to do,” Hellmuth said. “They adjusted, so I think the next step for us is also being able to adjust to teams changing their game in the middle of the game.”
As the end of the season approaches, Hellmuth said the mindset for the team is to just give every last bit of effort they can before the season ends.
“We only got three left, and as a team, I think we’re just trying to reach our best right now,” Hellmuth said. “I think the mindset just going into practice next week and into the last few games at home is to just ball out and play our best and really hit our peak right when we need to.”
On Nov. 7, graduate libero Riley Patterson was named the West Coast Conference Defensive Player of the Week for the third time this season after recording 36 digs in six sets against Saint Mary’s and Pacific. After Patterson had eight digs against LMU, she is now tied for first in the West Coast Conference in digs with 395 and is second in digs per set with 4.07.
“I believe no other team in our conference has as good of a libero,” Hellmuth said. “She keeps balls in play longer and she keeps the plays going much longer, which helps us greatly as a team.”
The game against LMU was also mental health awareness night, something that Pepperdine Women’s Volleyball team said they wanted to emphasize throughout the season. Their white jerseys have a green ribbon on the side, and many of the players wear green hair ties and shoelaces as a way to show awareness and end the stigma around mental health. The team is also often seen wearing shirts sporting the phrases “More Than An Athlete” and “Be Kind To Your Mind.”
Zelaya said the team chose to emphasize this because the team wants to make people aware of the mental health struggles student athletes face.
“We all just came together and decided it was a really important thing in athletics across the board,” Zelaya said. “It’s something we want to advocate for and push for on our team.”
Hellmuth said the emphasis on mental health has helped her feel comfortable with the team quickly.
“It’s helped me be able to be myself,” Helmuth said. “It made it really easy to open up to the girls quickly. They’re some of the people I’m closest with.”
“Now that we only have three left, we’re just to give it our all, do our best and play our volleyball,” Chillingworth said. “We’re just excited for these last few games coming up.”
Follow the Graphic on Twitter @PeppGraphic
Contact Tony Gleason via email: email@example.com