Regals Volleyball stage comeback victory from two sets down against Pomona-Pitzer


Photo by Olivia Madera - Reporter

The Regals volleyball team have won four consecutive conference games and eight of their last nine.

Olivia Madera, Reporter

California Lutheran University’s Regals volleyball team secured a comeback win from 0-2 in their homecoming game against the Pomona-Pitzer Sagehens. The Sagehens came into the game having completed 3-0 sweeps in their previous four games, and they looked to make it five sweeps in a row before the Regals mounted their comeback. 

“The kids did a great job and believed in themselves,” Head Coach Kellee Roesel said about the 3-2 victory. 

There was not much to separate the teams in the first set, and both Cal Lutheran and Pomona-Pitzer were neck and neck. Roesel called a timeout halfway through the set to try and find a way to shift momentum to the Regals’ side.  

“We just keep it pretty business-like. We don’t want to get too emotional…We just keep it very strategic,” Roesel said.

However, the timeout was not enough, as Cal Lutheran lost the first set 24-26. 

In the second set, further timeouts were called by the Regals, and while they helped even the score throughout, the Sagehens proved too strong and ran away with the set 25-21. That was when the Regals began their comeback. 

“The first two sets were very tense and we made a lot of errors… [but] we were able to…throw some other kids in and make some defensive adjustments,” Roesel said. 

Graduate middle blocker Maci Haddad, who gained an additional year of eligibility due to the COVID-19 pandemic, alluded to the changes instructed by Roesel. 

“We just had that change of mindset and we really just started playing CLU volleyball. That’s our goal every game, is to play Cal Lu volleyball, the first two sets we actually weren’t so we just changed it and good things were happening,” Haddad said. 

Haddad, who is a three-time All-American, has been instrumental for Cal Lutheran in her four years as a player, and was vital in the Regals’ comeback with 17 kills during the game. 

Junior setter Jalyn Chun reiterated Roesel’s sentiment and mentioned the Regals’ slow start, but credited the team’s mentality for the comeback victory. 

“I think we got off to a slow start, but the reverse sweep, I think it shows a lot about our grit and our character–like we’re not willing to give up,” Chun said. 

With it being homecoming weekend, Chun said that having Regal alumni come to the game inspired the team’s resurgence from two sets down. 

“I think having our alums here too, like you feel a lot of the support and the love. We talk about like all the time how they would do anything to be back on the court, so it’s for them too,” Chun said.

The Regals’ win against the Sagehens was their third in a row, and they improved their record to 10-2 in conference play and 13-8 overall this season. They will look to keep their run going as they approach the final stretch of games for the 2022 season.

Cal Lutheran currently sits at the No. 2 spot in the Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference, and their next conference game at home will be against Occidental on Tuesday, Oct. 25, at 7 p.m.