The UCSB women’s volleyball team persevered Friday night, beating UC Davis 3-2 in an epic comeback after being down 2-0.
“[Davis’] defensive performance was simply unbelievable,” Head Coach Kathy Gregory said. “It was a hard fought game throughout, and we stepped up in big spots when we needed to and found a way to win. I’m proud of our team.”
Earlier this season, Davis beat Santa Barbara after facing a 2-0 deficit. Despite losing the battle on the stat sheet (UCSB had 65 digs to Davis’ 96, and hit .223 to Davis’ .268), the Gauchos were able to flip the script on the Aggies behind timely hitting and gutsy play down the stretch.
“In the locker room, I told them we have a chance to do the same thing they did to us,” Gregory said. “We focused on one game at a time and once we started playing a little harder and with a little more passion behind our home crowd, we were able to pull off a great comeback.”
In tight fourth set that featured 19 tied scores and 12 lead changes, the Gauchos fed off the home crowd. Battling into extra sets, the Thunderdome was loud and UCSB took the set 29-27.
Entering the fifth set with all the momentum behind them, the Gauchos could do no wrong. Holding Davis to a .174 hitting percentage, UCSB completed the comeback by taking the final frame 15-10.
Santa Barbara welcomes Pacific to the Thuderdome Saturday night for its final home match of the season. The Gauchos’ three seniors – setter Dana Vargas, outside hitter Charlene DeHoog, and middle blocker Kasey Kipp – will be honored before the match on senior night.