In a heated battle that pitched state-ranked No. 24 LBCC against No. 12 Mt. SAC, the Vikings fell in three sets, 25-23, 25-20, 25-22. Though the Mounties won in straight sets, it was tightly contested throughout, with the combined score at 75-65.
The crowd, made up of fans, friends, and fellow LBCC athletes, was as wild and rowdy as ever, drowning out the support for Mt. SAC—but even with the energy behind them, the Vikings struggled to find the extra gear to put them over the top. In the third and final set, for example, Long Beach went on runs of 4-0, 4-1, and 3-1, but the Mounties countered, and the Vikings couldn’t turn it on at the end of the set. “We weren’t aggressive on offense,” LBCC head coach Suzie Witmer said after. “We weren’t in the groove. We never really got a smooth rhythm going tonight.”
Individual leaders for the Vikings were outside hitter Lacy Baker, who finished with 10 kills and 12 digs (though she was hampered by 8 errors); LBPOSTSports.com blogger Maricris Lapaix, who had 6 kills, 6 digs, and 2 aces; and Jessica Booth, who had 6 kills and 4 digs on the night.
Play has tended to run hot and cold for the Vikings, who’ve had each of their last six matches end after three sets. In three of those six matches, that was a good thing; in the other three, like last night’s match with the Mounties, it was supreme frustration.
The loss drops the Vikings to 10-5 on the year and 3-3 in conference. They’ll next be in action on Friday, at Cerritos; their next home match is (of course) next Wednesday, when they’ll take on East L.A. at six.