HONOLULU -- The University of Hawai`i beach volleyball team claimed the Queens Cup with 5-0 victories over LMU and No. 9 Stetson for the second consecutive day on Saturday.
The fifth-ranked Rainbow Wahine opened the day with a 5-0 win over LMU. Ari Homayun and Carly Kan opened the day with a 21-10, 21-11 win on Court 5 before Hannah Zalopnay and Norene Iosia put UH ahead 2-0 with a 13-21, 21-11, 15-9 win on court 4.
The 'Bows made it a 5-0 sweep with a 21-17, 21-13 win on Court 3 from Emily Maglio and Laurel Weaver on Court 3, a 21-14, 22-20 win on Court 1 from Mikayla Tucker and Morgan Martin, and a 25-27, 21-12, 15-11 win from Nikki Taylor and Ka'iwi Schucht on Court 2.
Hawai`i again jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the afternoon match against Stetson, although the Hatters took UH to three sets in each of the opening matches. Zalopany and Iosia got UH on the board first with a 17-21, 23-21, 15-10 win on Court 5 before Homayun and Kan made it 2-0 with a 21-15, 17-21, 18-16 win on Court 4.
Maglio and Weaver kept the UH momentum going with a 21-12, 21-18 win on Court 3 and Tucker and Martin added a 21-15, 21-11 win on Court 1 to put Hawai`i ahead 4-0. After falling 21-12 in the first set on Court 2, Taylor and Weaver picked up a 21-18 win in the second set to force a third, where they eventually took a dramatic 17-15 victory to give UH the 5-0 sweep.
UH extends its program-record season-opening win streak to eight matches with the wins Saturday, going a perfect 4-0 in the Queens Cup.
LMU picked up a 3-2 win over Stetson in the other match on Saturday. LMU finished 2-2 in the Queens Cup while Stetson went 0-4.
Hawai`i's Ka`iwi Schucht earned Most Outstanding Player honors, while teammate Emily Maglio was named the Best Blocker. LMU's Kristen Castellanos was recognized as the Best Defensive Player, and Stetson's Maggie Skjelbred was named Best Offensive Player.
The Rainbow Wahine will return to Queens Sandbox in Waikiki Beach next weekend to host the Outrigger Hawai`i Invitational where UH will face Nebraska (Mar. 17), No. 2 Florida State (Mar. 17), Utah (Mar. 18), No. 8 Arizona (Mar. 18) and No. 1 USC (Mar. 18).
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