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Cal Poly Upsets No. 23 Wichita State in Comeback Victory

Cal Poly Upsets No. 23 Wichita State in Comeback Victory

EUGENE, Ore. — The Cal Poly volleyball team came back despite losing the first two sets of their match, winning the final three to upset No. 23 Wichita State thanks to career and season-high's from multiple Mustang players.

The Mustangs, now 7-2 on the year, won the match 25-23, 25-21, 28-26, 25-16, 15-9.

The early part of the first set was back-and-forth until Wichita State (7-2) scored three straight points on two Mustang attack errors and a service ace to go up 12-8. The Mustangs would rally with a run of their own down 14-9, going on a 6-1 run to tie it at 15.

The teams would continue to trade points until, as Cal Poly led 23-22, the Shockers scored three straight points to win the set.

The second set began with Wichita State scoring the first four points before a Savannah Niemen kill got the Mustangs on the board. A Cal Poly 3-0 run would get them its first lead of the set at 12-11.

Tied at 19, Wichita State scored 5 straight points to go up 24-19 and would go on to win 25-21.

A wild third set saw 20 ties and 9 lead changes.

Tied at 18, Cal Poly scored 3 straight points to go up 21-18. The Mustangs would hold off two match points the Shockers had before back-to-back Torrey Van Winden kills to win the set 28-26.

The sophomore transfer set a new career-high for single-game kills with 30; fifth highest-kill match in the country this year. She also hit .348 for the match and had 16 digs.

The Mustangs came out red-hot in the fourth set; scoring the first four points behind three Torrey Van Winden kills (she would go on to have nine in the set). It would be the most dominant set of the match by either team as Cal Poly hit .528 for the set.

They would take their biggest lead of set at 21-13 and never look back as a Nikki Jackson kill would win the set for the Mustangs 25-16.

It would be a back-and-forth final set before Cal Poly took a 5-4 lead behind two kills by senior Raeann Greisen. The Mustangs would take an 8-7 lead as the teams switched sides.

They would then go on a 5-1 run to go up 13-18. A Niemen kill would end the set and the match to complete the comeback for Cal Poly.

Junior outside hitter Adlee Van Winden had a season-high 22 kills and 19 digs for the Mustangs. Senior setter Taylor Nelson set a new career-high with 74 assists. Sophomore middle blocker Nikki Jackson also set a new career-high with 8 kills. Junior libero Katherine Brouker led Cal Poly in digs with a season-high 21.

The Shockers were led by Tabitha Brown who had 23 kills, hitting .420 and 10 digs. Abbie Lehman chipped in with 15 kills and six blocks.

The win gives Cal Poly its third victory over a ranked opponent in the last three seasons.

Taylor Nelson and Torrey Van Winden were named to the Nike Classic all-tournament team.

The Mustangs finished 2-1 in the tournament. They will continue tournament play away from home next weekend in the Green Bay Country Inn & Suites Classic. They will take on North Dakota and IUPUI on Friday followed by host school Green Bay on Saturday.