RECAP: Sac State volleyball dominates both Eastern Washington and University of Idaho at home

The Hornets are now 10-5 in the Big Sky Conference play after pair of wins


Jordan Latimore

Sac State volleyball players celebrate immediately after scoring against Idaho on Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022, at The Nest. The Hornets are now 10-5 in the Big Sky conference play after winning 3-1 against the Vandals.

Myla Booth, Volleyball Beat Writer

The Sac State volleyball team returned home for a pair of matchups this weekend against Eastern Washington University and the University of Idaho, securing victories against both teams. 

In the first matchup, the Sac State volleyball team swept Eastern Washington 3-0 in a home match at The Nest Thursday evening.

The Hornets improved 14-13 overall and 10-5 in Big Sky Conference play after defeating Eastern Washington and Idaho this weekend, with Eastern Washington dropping to 9-16 overall and 4-9 in the Big Sky play and Idaho dropping to 4-22 overall and 1-13 in the Big Sky play.


Thursday: The Hornets with a victorious sweep against Eastern Washington, win 3-0 

Sac State and Eastern Washington had an aggressive first set in their matchup Thursday evening. 

“I felt pretty good coming into tonight’s match,” sophomore outside hitter Ellie Tisko said. “We had a strong practice week and we kind of knew to just get the job done — especially after the win against the University of Montana last week.” 

The Hornets came into the first set with lots of teamwork and constant hustle. The Eagles couldn’t keep up and made a few serving and out-of-bounds errors. 

Junior middle blocker Kalani Hayes and junior outside hitter Caitlin Volkmann came through with a supreme double block, deflecting the attacked ball from Eastern Washington. 

The Hornets were on a roll and it was throwing the Eagles off as they received a double contact call — which is when a player has too much contact with the ball. 

Tisko finished the first set with a .500 hitting percentage and three kills, including the final point that concluded the first set for Sac State 25-19. 

“I feel like I played pretty well,” Tikso said. “I did what I had to do. I used the block and kind of just watched the court as we played.”

Sac State was ready to bring that momentum from the first set into the second set as they had no ties or lead changes with Eastern Washington. 

The Eagles and the Hornets exchanded serving and out of bounds errors, giving away points to one another. 

Head coach Ruben Volta called his first timeout in the second set even though the Hornets were leading.

“We needed to play with more control,” Volta said. “We started making some errors and missing serves so I said ‘let’s not give them a bunch of points. Let’s just settle down and play.’” 

After the team huddle, junior outside hitter Bridgette Smith and senior middle blocker Tiyanane Kamba-Griffin saw through with an all-powerful double block. 

Eastern Washington was trying to catch up, but couldn’t, as Sac State pulled through with the win of 25-20 in the second set. 

The third and final set started with the Eagles hitting an out-of-bounds error, giving a point to the Hornets. 

The Hornets took control of this last set with 13 kills, eight more than the Eagles, and even scored an ace.

“I thought we served well, blocked well at times and won some good rallies defensively overall,” Volta said. 

The Hornets walked away with the win in the final set of 25-15. Sac State secured a victorious clean  3-0 sweep.  



“A lot of things went right,” Volta said. “We got it kind of going and I think our middles were really good tonight; they were just unstoppable until the very end there.”

The second set was aggressive and tough to watch. 

Sac State and Idaho both had a few errors, giving away easy points to one another. There were a total of 13 ties and four lead changes in this set. 

Senior setter Ashtin Olin and junior middle blocker Kalani Hayes came through with a good defensive block after the Hornets and Vandals were trading good saves back and forth.

“During the second set, it felt like we were just playing down to their level — a little slow and not with a lot of energy,” Olin said. “I feel like we kind of let them sneak back in and we didn’t put a stop to their runs. But I’m really glad we turned it around in that third set.” 

Olin tends to hit the opposing teams with the back handed sneak kill and it works every time when they least expect it. However, this time it wasn’t enough.

Idaho ended up on top with 26-24 this set due to Sac State hitting out of bounds and giving them a point. 

“I actually wasn’t happy with how we played,” Volta said. “I thought we stopped playing defense and credit to them, I thought they played really well at that time. I felt like we needed to respond a little better; [I] just wasn’t happy with our defense.

The Hornets roared back in the third and fourth sets, taking control of the rest of the match. Sac State stayed in constant motion and called out plays and signaled to one another. 

Kamba-Griffin and Hayes came through with impressive kills in the third set. Sac State came out the third set winning 25-14. 

The Hornets finished strong these last two sets, ending the fourth and final set with a win of 25-12. Idaho just couldn’t keep up with Sac State. 

Playing here as a senior, I’m just feeling very grateful to play with the team that I’m playing with,” Olin said. “Those last two sets just felt so good that we were able to put a stop to their confidence and show that we’re capable of doing those things. We’re just capable of suffocating teams and just really thankful for my team.”

The Hornets’ final regular season match will be at home against Portland State on Friday at 7 p.m.