Sac State volleyball falls 3-2 at home against Portland State in the regular season finale

The Hornets first Big Sky playoff game is on Wednesday against Montana


Arely Duran

Sac State volleyball players huddle before going into their next set against Idaho State on Friday, Nov. 18, 2022 at The Nest. The Hornets are now 14-14 overall and 10-6 in the Big Sky play heading into the Big Sky tournament.

Myla Booth, Volleyball Beat Writer

With a last ditch effort to improve their conference standing before the Big Sky tournament kicks off this week, the Sacramento State volleyball team fell 3-2 at home against Portland State Friday evening at The Nest.

The Sacramento State volleyball team was fighting to improve their standing in the Big Sky Conference when they fell 3-2 at home against Portland State Friday evening. 

“I’m disappointed, but I think we just have to use this as fuel for the tournament,” junior middle blocker Kalani Hayes said. “We’re going to be put in tough games like this in the tournament,, so honestly,, I think it really did prepare us to go play our best next week.” 

The Hornets are the fourth seed in the Big Sky Conference tournament next week in Ogden, Utah as they will play Montana, a team currently in the fifth seed, on Wednesday at 12  p.m.

This is a single-elimination tournament, so the Hornetsthe Hornets will have to stay ready to play against any team that comes their way. The semi-finals are Friday and the championship game is on Saturday. 

First Set: 26-24 Hornets

Sac State and Portland State came into this match ready to give their all with strong defense. Players were constantly moving, digging and sliding to stop the other team from scoring. 

Portland State was leading until Hayes hit the Vikings with a kill that tied the score.

The Vikings and the Hornets were playing close to the net more than once during this set; the game was tightly contested throughout the set. 

There were a total of 12 ties and eight lead changes. Sac State and Portland State both made  errors including out of bounds, serving errors and the Vikings with a violation in-play.

The Hornets came out with the win of 26-24 in the first set. 

Second Set: 19-25 Vikings

Going into the second set, the Hornets were up for it against the Vikings. 

Junior outside hitter Bridgette Smith was in action as she hit a kill for Sac State after back-and-forth plays with Portland State. 

Sac State was trying to build their momentum back up, but weren’t able to as Portland State took a six point lead — winning the second set 25-19.

“We just didn’t play steady enough,” Sac State head coach Ruben Volta said. 

Third Set: 21-25 Vikings

In the third set of this match, Sac State came in with aggressive double blocks and powerful kills, taking the lead until Portland State took dominance again after a media timeout. 

There were a total of seven ties and two lead changes in this set. 

Sac State showed hustle with constant movement around the court and good defense as they stayed by the net to block any attacked balls from Portland State. 

“It was frustrating because we knew in those moments, we weren’t playing our best,” Hayes said. “Especially frustrating when you’re trying so hard to turn things around.” 

The Vikings came out on top in this set with the win of 21-25. 

Fourth Set: 25-21 Hornets

After the third set, the Hornets knew they had to make a comeback as the Vikings were leading the set score with two sets to one. 

Junior outside hitter Caitlin Volkmann and Hayes came in with a defensive double-block. 

“I thought we played well,” Volta said. “We got a little more aggressive and I thought we passed really well.” 

The Hornets took control of this entire set with the win of 25-21. 

Fifth Set: 9-15 Vikings

Going into the final set, the Hornets and the Vikings were determined to win as they were both tied two to two for the set score. 

Sac State was leading until a timeout was called, giving Portland State a chance to catch up as they had a total of only two ties and one lead change. 

There were serving and out of bounds errors that gave away easy points. 

The Vikings took the victory of 9-15 this set and walked away with the set score win of 3-2. 

“It was a frustrating loss, but they’re ready for the tournament,” Volta said. “They want to put this behind them already.” 

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