Serve and pass. It’s as basic as volleyball can get.
Win that game and, more often than not, a team will win a match.
Eleventh-seeded Hawaii did just that Friday night when overcoming a Set 2 hiccup to put away Idaho State 25-16, 19-25, 25-12, 25-13. Senior libero Ali Longo had five of the Rainbow Wahine’s 12 aces and senior hitter Emily Hartong added three as Hawaii (25-4) advanced to the second round of the NCAA Tournament at the Stan Sheriff Center.
The Wahine, getting a match-high 21 kills from Hartong will take on former Western Athletic Conference rival Brigham Young at 7 tonight. The Cougars (23-6) eliminated Arizona State (19-14) in Friday’s first round, 21-25, 25-22, 25-17, 24-26, 15-10.
A near sellout crowd (8,238 tickets, 7,809 turnstile) saw Hawaii win its ninth straight. It was anything but easy as the Bengals (23-12) created some anxious moments for part of the hour and 46 minutes.
Hawaii started out hot, controlling Set 1 with six aces, three blocks and a diversified attack that hit .348. As happened all season, Hartong led the way with almost as many aces (3) as kills (4).
After dropping a lackluster Set 2, the Rainbow Wahine used a 7-0 run midway in Set 3 to take a 22-11 lead and regain control of the match. Senior setter Mita Uiato stuffed freshman hitter Marissa Todd for set point and Hartong’s 16th kill punctuated the rout.
Freshman opposite Nikki Taylor added 11 kills and Longo 14 digs for Hawaii. Sophomore hitter Tressa Lyman led Idaho State with 13 kills and freshman libero Hayley Farrer had 10 digs.