SAN DIEGO - The University of California San Diego women's volleyball team opened its 2017 season Friday by splitting a pair of matches at Point Loma's Seaside Invitational at Golden Gym. The Tritons started off strong with a huge, five-set victory over nationally fourth-ranked Alaska Anchorage before getting swept by Azusa Pacific.
UC San Diego 3, No. 4 Alaska Anchorage 2
Amanda Colla (Carlsbad/San Dieguito Academy) matched a career-high with 20 points to lead UC San Diego to a hard-fought, 3-2 victory against Alaska Anchorage. Scores were 25-14, 11-25, 25-18, 20-25, and 15-10. It was the first match of the season for both squads.
Colla accumulated most of her points with 18 kills, one short of her career best. The senior's point and kill totals were both match-highs. She hit .273 with six errors in 44 attack attempts and also added 11 digs and a pair of service aces.
Micah Hammond and Jessica Rieble each put down seven kills, while Alyson Penrose totaled 14 digs and Molly Dalziel had 13. Rachel Linden got the start at the setter position and finished with 30 assists.
Both teams hit under .200 with UCSD at .169 (49-23-154) and UAA at .146 (52-27-171). The Seawolves aced the Tritons 10 times, but also committed 14 errors from the service line. The Tritons held an 80-69 advantage in digs.
Alaska Anchorage got 15 kills from Chrisalyn Johnson, while Keala Kaio-Perez posted match highs with 18 digs and five aces.
The last time UC San Diego defeated a higher-ranked team was back on Oct. 17, 2009 when it downed No. 2 Cal State San Bernardino in four sets at RIMAC Arena in La Jolla.
With the victory, the Tritons remained undefeated against the Seawolves, improving to 5-0 in the all-time series.
Azusa Pacific 3, UC San Diego 0
In its second match of the day, UCSD (1-1) hit in the negative and was blanked by APU (1-0) by scores of 25-16, 25-19, and 25-20.
The Tritons struggled offensively, posting a -.010 attack percentage with 25 kills and 26 errors in 105 attempts. As a team, they totaled 22 assists and were blocked nine times by the Cougars.
Colla again led the team in kills - this time with eight - but she hit .038 with seven errors on 26 swings. She also had a match-high 13 digs on the defensive end.
Azusa Pacific, which hit .175 (36-18-103), got 16 kills and six blocks (three solo) from Sara Wagenveld. Natalie Klapp had 12 digs.
UC San Diego plays two more matches Saturday to conclude action at the Seaside Invitational. The Tritons take on Simon Fraser at 10:45 a.m. and Point Loma at 8 p.m. Both matches can be followed by live stats and live video here.