Esvelt speeds to finish, wins her second collegiate race

Volleyball continues home game dominance

Troy Vigil , Staff Writer

VOLLEYBALL:

Senior hitter Erin Gould preparing to spike the ball at their game again against Western Oregon. (Rio Giancarlo)

On Thursday, Sept. 30, volleyball fought back with a well-earned victory after they were outscored six sets to one during their Alaska trip. 

 At home, the Falcons pulled off a shutout victory against Saint Martin’s University. Sophomore outside hitter Sydney Perry accounted for ten kills and three blocks during the match. Perry has the third-highest number of kills this season at 90. Senior outside hitter Erin Gould also had ten kills and one block for the Falcons. 

The team came back home on Saturday, Oct. 2, to play the Western Oregon University Wolves. The Wolves entered the game with a 2-9 overall season record. 

The Falcons went on to win all three sets, shutting out Western Oregon. Sophomore opposite Maddie Pruden had 12 kills and four blocks in the matchup. SPU’s volleyball team continues to have a perfect home record of 7-0.

The Falcons will be on the road again for their next match, facing Montana State Billings on Saturday, Oct. 9. 

CROSS COUNTRY:

Following a two-week break, the cross country athletes set off to compete at the 2021 NCAA Chambers Bay Collegiate Open on Saturday, Oct. 2. The 5k race was the only race offered at this event for the women, and the men were faced with the 8k race. 

In the women’s race, sophomore Annika Esvelt took home first place for her second race in a row with a time of 18:32. She outran the second-place winner by 13 seconds. Esvelt has only run three races this year, winning two out of the three. 

Esvelt was not the only Falcon to finish in the top spots of this race. Sophomore Ellie Rising finished in fourth place with a time of 18:45. Rising was only one second off from taking third place.

The women’s team ranked fourth out of the ten teams who placed at this event due to Esvelt and Rising’s performances. 

In the 8k race, the men did not place among the top finishers. Senior Colin Boutin finished in 14th with a time of 26:26. Boutin was the highest-placed men finisher for the Falcons. 

Sophomore Brennan Leblanc was only 15 seconds behind Boutin and took 16th. The men’s team was 6th overall out of nine teams. 

After both men’s and women’s races, the Falcons finished fourth in the team standings, with 105 total points. 

WOMEN’S SOCCER:

Women’s soccer took their first loss of the season against Western Oregon on Sept. 30. Both teams were evenly matched and did not allow each other to get the upper hand. The score at the end of both halves was 0-0, forcing the game to go into overtime. 

Five minutes into overtime, Lilly Nowatzke scored the only goal of the game for the Wolves, sending the Falcons home with a broken winning streak. 

On Saturday, the team bounced back from a scoreless first half as they shut out Saint Martin’s University, 3-0.

In the second half, senior midfielder Makena Rietz scored two of the three goals. Reitz has scored a total of four goals this season. 

The last goal of the game was scored by sophomore forward Lauren Forster with an assist from junior forward AJ DePinto. This is Forster’s fourth goal of the season. Forster is now tied at four goals for the season with fellow teammates DePinto and Rietz. They are the Falcons’ highest scorers. 

SPU left Saturday’s game with an overall record of 6-1. The Falcons will be back at home on Thursday, Oct. 7, playing against Simon Fraser University.

MEN’S SOCCER:

Senior forward Alden Massey scores the winning goal against Montana State Billings. (Gabrialla Cockerell)

On Saturday, the Falcons kept things moving in the right direction. The team matched up against Montana State Billings, who entered with an overall record of 2-3.

SPU had to dig themselves out of a hole early into the first half. The Falcons were down by one when the Yellowjackets quickly scored the first goal of the game. They scored 13 minutes into the game after a poorly executed backpass by SPU. 

The Falcons tied up the game seven minutes later as senior midfielder Travis Swallow scored with assists from Jose Benavides and Tyler Speer. 

The Yellowjackets applied pressure on the Falcons late into the first half and took the lead back with only seven minutes left of play. 

 

In the second half, senior forward Alex Mejia tied the game again after only one minute. This was Meija’s eighth goal of the season. He continues to lead the team in the most goals scored. 

SPU had to battle against the clock as the Yellowjackets once again scored, taking the lead. The Falcons needed to score before the second half was over if they wanted to stay in the match. 

Sophomore forward Judah Johnston would score an equalizing goal at the 73-minute mark with a header from fifteen yards away. This goal would be Johnston’s first goal of the season and his collegiate career. 

Following Johnston’s goal, the score would again be tied up, 3-3. No other goals were scored during the second half and would send the game into overtime. Neither team was able to score in the first period, forcing a second overtime. 

With only a little over five minutes left to play, senior forward Alden Massey faced the opposing goalie one-on-one in the box. Massey was set up for the shot by a quick pass by Meija that pushed him right past the defenders. Massey would end up breaking the tie and gave Seattle Pacific their fourth win in a row.

The Falcons look to keep their streak alive against Northwest Nazarene at home on Oct. 7.