The No. 6 University of Hawai'i women's volleyball team fell in four sets to Kansas State, 25-19, 28-30, 25-22, 25-20 on Saturday, Day Two of the Chevron Rainbow Wahine Invitational at the Stan Sheriff Center. McKenna Granato drilled a career-high in kills to lead the 'Bows while Kalei Greeley notched a career-high in digs.
Granato finished the night with 19 kills, but also had 13 errors in 66 swings for a .091 hitting percentage. She also tied her career-high with 12 digs after getting the start against the Wildcats. Granato was the only Rainbow Wahine with double-digit kills for the match.
Three UH players though notched double-figures in digs—led by Greeley's career-best mark of 18. She began the match playing only in the back row, but at the end of the first set, started to play all six rotations. She ended the night with her first six kills of the season with just one error in 30 attaches for a .278 hitting percentage. She also recorded an ace and two blocks (one solo).
The Rainbow Wahine pulled away late to win the first set, 25-19 with Granato and Emily Maglio pacing UH with four kills apiece with Tayler Higgins dishing out 12 assists.
The second set was a marathon, see-saw battle that saw 11 ties—six coming down the stretch after hitting 22-22. Hawai'i was trailing 21-22 when rookie Norene Iosia entered the match for the first time and she reeled off three aces with a Kirsten Sibley kill in the middle to give the 'Bows a 24-22 lead, but it slipped away as K-State battled back to knot the set at 24-24 and the Wildcats wound up taking the second set, 30-28.
In the third and fourth sets, the Rainbow Wahine struggled to terminate rallies. In the third, there were 11 ties and five lead changes in the set early. Towards the end of the set, after a Granato kill tied the set at 20-20, K-State reeled off five of the next seven points to pull away for a 25-22 win. The fourth set was also tight early on, but an 8-1 run gave KSU a seven point lead at 15-8 from which UH could not recover from.
It is only the fifth time in school history that UH has lost their first two matches of the season, and the first time since the 'Bows fell to another combination of Big 12/Big 10 opponents, Nebraska and Penn State to start the 2005 season. The other seasons were 2001 (Nebraska and Wisconsin); 1980 (Pacific/UCLA); and 1976 (UCLA twice).
Hawai'i will take on Arizona in the tournament finale on Sunday, August 28 at 5:00 p.m. The first match between Wisconsin and Kansas State will be played at 12:00 p.m. due to flight schedules.
Hawaii News Now
420 Waiakamilo Road, Suite 205
Honolulu, HI 96817
Main (808) 847-3246
News (808) 847-1112