The Rainbow Warriors (15-2, 6-2 MPSF) wiped out the Pepperdine Waves (9-20, 5-12 MPSF) in a sweep.
“We played good tonight,” head coach Charlie Wade said. “At the end there I was not very easy about how it was going, it was too easy. This is a really good team and those are really good players and I think they’re going to play a lot better. Their best player didn’t have a kill in the first set and that’s not going to happen. They had five in the second set and there is no doubt in my mind they will play better on Sunday so we’ll have to play better as well.”
The first set was the closest in score, 25-21. The Waves kept it close with several tied scores and even taking the lead a few times in the beginning of the set.
The Warriors pulled farther away from the Waves not letting them reach 20 in the second set, 25-19.
“That’s pretty smart, pretty efficient hitting. In our world that’s not something we control,” Wade said. “I thought we blocked pretty well…credit to them they’re not swinging into the block. You can only move your feet and get in position and hope to touch it.”
The Warriors held the lead for the entirety of the third set winning 25-11.
For two of the top blocking teams, the Waves only had two blocks and the Warriors only five.
“They were covering everything, they were playing really great defense behind their block,” setter Jennings Franciskovic said. “If we’re not getting block points, the biggest thing is that we’re still going to get touches and slow down their hitters. So I thought we blocked great tonight, it might not look like it in the stats, but we did exactly what we wanted to do to slow down their hitters.”
Hawai‘i hit at .477 with sophomore opposite hitter Stijn van Tilburg hitting at .737 and senior setter Jennings Franciskovic hitting at .833.
Tilburg also lead the Warriors in kills with 15 and contribute one of the five team blocks.
Franciskovic had five kills, 34 assists and a service ace.
“I have so many games at five kills I need to get over that hump,” Franciskovic said.
The Warriors will rematch Pepperdine on Feb 26 at 5 p.m. HST in the Stan Sheriff Center.