Playing in the school's 14th NCAA tournament, Santa Clara fell in the first round 3-0 to No. 8 Hawaii. Hawaii, who ran through its conference undefeated this year with an 18-0 record, advances to Saturday night's second round to play the winner of the No. 5 Washington – Central Arkansas being played later Friday.
Set scores were 20-25, 13-25 and 19-25. The Broncos finish the season at 20-12 and No. 8 Hawaii moves to 27-2. Santa Clara finished fourth in the West Coast Conference with a 9-7 record, defeating three top 20 teams along the way including No. 14 San Diego, No. 16 BYU and No. 18 Pepperdine.
Bronco head coach Jon Wallace complimented Hawaii on the win and also noted how well Jane Croson and Emily Hartong both played. "We didn't have a lot of film on them, but they were able to get the ball to Croson and Hartong and they are very good players. They were able to control the tempo through those two players the entire match," said Wallace.
Wallace liked the fight of the Bronco volleyball team. "I liked our fight throughout, including in game three. We tried to change our line-up around to give us a different look in the third game to slow up their attackers. I am proud of how the girls stayed together and played hard."
Wallace also praised the leadership of departing seniors Lexi Williamson and Kayla Lommori throughout the year. "I am really proud of Kayla and Lexi," said Wallace. "They have been great leaders for us and I am glad they could play in the NCAA tournament during their careers."
Santa Clara hit .168 with 34 kills (16 em 107 att.). They collected 33 assists, three service aces, two service errors, three team blocks and 40 digs. Hawaii hit .386 with 55 kills (11 e, 114 att.). They collected 49 assists, one service ace, four service errors, eight team blocks and 51 digs.
Individually Santa Clara was led by Taylor Milon's 10 kills as she hit .280 (3 e, 25 att.). Megan Anders hit .316 with eight kills (2 e, 19 att.). Katherine Douglas had seven kills with eight digs. Alyssa Anderson collected 18 assists, an ace and three digs. Chelsea Heier had 14 assists and two digs. Katy Schatzman had 12 digs.
Hawaii was led by Jane Croson's 22 kills and nine digs. Emily Hartong scored 17 kills and seven digs. Alyssa Longo scored 17 digs. Mita Uiato had 41 assist sand nine digs.
The Broncos got on the board first with Williamson's kill off the block. Hawaii scored a couple before an Anders kill to the side gave SCU the ball. Williamson collected another kill off the block. After a couple of Bronco errors, a Douglas kill off the block gave the Broncos the ball, tied at 4-4. Hawaii scored four of the next five to take an 8-5 lead before Hawaii's attack went wide. A kill by Lommori off the block was followed by a team block by Cameron and Lommori to tie it up 8-8. A couple of Hawaii kills were followed by one by Milton for a sideout. A kill by Hartong off the block gave Hawaii the ball with an 11-9 lead. An attack error by Williamson was followed by one by Kalei Adolpho. The Broncos were called in the net and Hawaii served, up 13-10, but Anders kill off the block was money and Douglas collected a kill on the over-pass. Milton scored the Broncos first ace of the day to tie it up 13-13. Hawaii scored four of the next five to move ahead 17-14. An attack error by Ashley Kasti gave SCU the ball. The Rainbows collected a team block and then a kill off the block by Croson before SCU called for time, down 19-15. Long scored an ace, the team's first, and then served it into the net. A kill by Croson gave Hawaii the ball. Back-to-back kills by Milton made it 21-18. Croson's seventh kill of the set gave Hawaii the ball. Williamson's kill off a Hawaii player in the back row made it 22-19 UH. After the Rainbows collected a couple of kills, the Broncos called for time. Anders kill stopped the rally. A kill by Jade Vorster gave Hawaii the first set, 25-20. SCU hit .235 with 12 kills (4 e, 34 att.). Hawaii hit .297 with 17 kills (6 e, 37 att.). Croson had eight kills for Hawaii and three Broncos had three kills each.
Hawaii started the second set on a 2-0 run, including a crushing kill from the back row by Croson. Lommori's kill also proved to be crushing, taking Croson off her feet. After the Rainbows got the sideout, a Milton kill gave SCU the ball, down 3-2. Hawaii scored a kill and then the Broncos sided-out on a Rainbow service error. Croson scored her 10th kill before Hawaii was called in the net on a kill by Anders. A couple of Rainbow kills made it 7-4. Anders stopped the run with a kill in the back row. The Rainbow's scored four straight before SCU called for time, down 10-5. A kill by Lommori stopped the run. Harstong collected back-to-back cross court kills. Kills by Cameron and Milton stopped the run. Harstong's cross court kill gave Hawaii a side-out. Back-to-back back-row attacks for Croson put Hawaii up 16-8. Timeout Broncos. Hawaii scored a couple of more before a service error. Croson's kill was followed by Milton's kill and Anderson's first ace of the day, 21-11 Hawaii. After a Rainbow sideout, Anders crushed it in the back row. The Broncos rallied for a couple on a kill by Douglas. Adolpho's kill gave Hawaii the second set 25-13. SCU hit .194 with 10 kills (4 e, 31 att.). Hawaii hit .677 with 21 kills (0 e, 31 att.). Croson scored eight kills and Milton and Anders scored three each for SCU.
After a Hawaii kill, Maas collected her first kill of the match in the middle. Douglas scored a cross-court kill to tie it up 2-2. Hawaii scored five of the next six before a Bronco team block by Lommori and Cameron gave SCU the sideout, down 7-4. Croson's attempt went long but Hawaii team block gave it the ball. Milton's kill was followed by one by Hartong. Hawaii scored again before Milton's cross court kill gave SCU a sideout, down 10-7. A kill by Anders to the side was followed by a tip by Croson for a kill. After a Bronco attack error, Hawaii served it into the net. Hartong's 14th kill of the match and Croson's 20th kill of the day for Hawaii made it 14-9. After another Hartong kill, SCU called for time, down 15-9. The teams traded points on kills by Lommori and Douglas. A Douglas ace and then an attack error by Croson caused Hawaii to call for time. A kill by Milton off the block, her ninth of the day made it 18-15 Hawaii. After a kill by Croson, Santa Clara called for time, down 20-15. Trading points, Milton's kill off the block gave SCU the ball, down 21-16. Maas collected a block solo to make it 21-17. Croson's kill from the back row was followed by a kill by Cameron in the front. A kill by Anders made it 23-19. Hartong's 17th kill of the day gave Hawaii match point, 24-19. Hawaii pcked up match point on Croson's 22nd kill of the day, 25-19. SCU hit .095 with 12 kills (8 e, 42 att.). Hawaii hit .261 with 17 kills (5 e, 46 att.).