The University of Hawaii women’s volleyball team earned a crucial 25-23, 25-23, 14-25, 25-17 victory over Long Beach State on Saturday night at SimpliFi Arena at Stan Sheriff Center, clinching the No. 2 seed in the inaugural Big West Conference tournament in the process.
Hawaii improved to 21-8 overall and closed out the regular season 14-4 in Big West play, beating out The Beach (19-9, 13-5) for the last bye into the semifinals.
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Long Beach State began the match on an 7-0 run and built an 18-8 lead, only to see UH go on a stunning 10-0 run. From there, the Rainbow Wahine willed their way to the first set victory, much to the delight of the SimpliFi Arena at Stan Sheriff Center crowd of 7,265.
Hawaii used the momentum from Set 1 to take Set 2, but Long Beach State thwarted UH’s chances of a sweep by taking the third.
After the match, Hawaii honored seniors Amber Igiede, Riley Wagoner, Kennedi Evans, Talia Edmonds, Kendra Ham and Chandler Cowell.
Igiede went out with one last signature performance, leading the way with a match-high 21 kills with five blocks. Sophomore Caylen Alexander added a near double-double of 19 kills and nine digs.
The Big West Tournament will begin on Wednesday in Long Beach, Calif., with UC Santa Barbara earning the top seed. Hawaii will play an opponent to be determined in Friday’s second semifinal at 4 p.m. HST.