For one of the first times this season, the University of Hawaii at Hilo women’s volleyball team showed signs of regression.
Luckily for the Vulcans, freshman Kyndra Trevino-Scott keeps getting better and better.
Trevino-Scott posted 20 kills Thursday in what marked the third straight strong performance to start her college career, and UHH came from behind for a 25-20, 23-25, 24-26, 25-19, 15-5 victory against East Central University at UHH Gym.
After UHH (3-0) dropped its first sets of the season, Trevino-Scott compiled seven kills in Game 4, including the last three points of the set to tie the match.
The freshmen-laden Vulcans raced out to a 6-0 lead in the fifth set, rode the serves of Kahealani Vento-Rowe and Kelia Parilla and then put the match away on a Trevino-Scott kill.
The Tigers (0-1) of Ada, Okla., hit -.056 in Game 5, and UHH coach Tino Reyes was mindful that his team might not have stayed in the match if not for 18 East Central service errors.
“We were stuck in first gear,” Reyes said. “The best that we played was the fifth game, and all that was because we served and passed better. We didn’t do anything fancy or shocking. We just served and passed better.”
Freshman outside hitter Marley Strand-Nicolaisen smacked 15 kills but made 13 errors, and junior Callie Aberle added eight kills and 15 digs for UHH. Freshman setter Sienna Davis had 38 assists.
“Some of them reverted to their old habits,” Reyes said. “Maybe it was because of the pressure.
“When we look at the film, we’re going to see some things that are real uncharacteristic after the first few games. We need to go back and change that habit, and make sure they have the right habits out there. Hopefully, we can shore up some things.”
UHH can equal its win total from last season at 3 p.m. Saturday when the teams match up again.
Trevino-Scott, a middle blocker from Penryn, Calif., has played a pivotal role in UHH’s unbeaten start. She increased her kill total for the third straight match and hit .432 on 37 swings while taking on a bigger role in the offense. For the season, she’s hitting .453 (29 of 64).
Neither team hit for a high percentage, with East Central holding a slight edge (.135-.134). The Tigers, who started five seniors, were led by sophomore Haley Gerken’s 16 kills.