Warrior Volleyball: Hawaii completes the sweep

Pedro Azenha knocks down 24 kills in leading the Warriors to a four game win and the series sweep of Ball State.

Honolulu, HI -The third ranked Warrior volleyball team continued their winning ways Thursday night as they beat down the Ball State Cardinals 3-1. The Warriors now hold a 6-2 overall record (3-1, MPSF). Their 27-30, 30-24, 30-24, 30-17 victory over the Cardinals made it five in a row at home for the squad.

Sophomore Pedro Azenha had an incredible night for the Warriors with a team high 24 kills, hitting .571 in 35 swings. Azenha also recorded two service aces, one dig and a career high two solo blocks. Delano Thomas added 19 kills, one assists, three digs and four blocks, while freshman setter Brian Beckwith put up fifty assists in fifty attempts for the Warriors. Joshua Stanhiser put away 10 blocks, five kills, and one dig; and Jose Delgado had six kills, one service ace, five digs, and three blocks to end the match.

In game one Ball State jumped to an early 5-2 lead and never looked back. The Cardinals dominated in game one despite hitting only .194. Hawai`i grabbed the lead once during the entire game and was held to a mere .192 hitting percentage as the Cardinals set the pace of the game and drew first blood with a 27-30 win.

Game two saw a much more together Warrior team, as they reset the pace of the match. The squad took a 4-2 lead to start, off of several Ball State errors and an Azenha kill. The Warriors continued to hold a tentative lead until mid game; a kill from Thomas and an Azenha ace provided the spark the squad needed to jump to a 22-15 lead. Hawai`i found victory in the second game, 30-24, off a Delgado kill, evening the game count at one-all.

The Cardinals began game three with an 8-2 lead before the Warriors went on a 5-0 run to even up the score at 15. The two teams kept it close in the second half until the Warriors went on a 4-0 run to snatch away the third game, 30-24. The Warrior offense hit .374 in the game while the defense held Ball State to .209.

By game four the Warriors had control of the match firmly in their pocket. Hawai`i took an early 6-3 lead; by mid game the squad was on a 5-2 run, leading the Cardinals, 15-9. In the second half the Warriors outscored Ball State, 15-8. The difference in the fourth game was the Warrior defense who had seven and a half blocks in the fourth game alone. Hawai`i out blocked the Cardinals, 17-6 in the match.

The Warriors will now take to the road where they face No. 7 Stanford (Feb. 13 and 14) and No. 12 Pacific (Feb. 16 and 17).

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