If a 20-20/Triple-Double did not exist in volleyball before Wednesday, VC's Nevada Knowles made sure it did after. The sophomore All-American had 20 kills, 21 assists and 10 digs in the No. 2-ranked Pirates' four-set victory over Moorpark in front of a large and vocal crowd at the Athletic Event Center. Ventura (13-0, 1-0) dropped the first set against the Raiders 25-20 before winning three straight, 25-19, 25-22, 25-23, in the opening game of their Western State Conference North Division schedule.
The first set was close, but Moorpark was able to open up a 12-8 lead and maintain the advantage. Knowles hit a winner and the Pirates had a block at the net to pull to within 20-18, but VC was not able to sustain the momentum, dropping the opener 25-20, just the their third set loss all season.
Ventura turned things around quickly in the second set, jumping out to the early lead. Knowles hit a winner, Katey Mulville had a hit that led to a Raider error, and Knowles followed with an ace as the Pirates built a 10-5 advantage leading to an MC timeout. VC extended the advantage to 13-6 before Moorpark was able to close the deficit to 18-17. Kayla Murdoch had a kill to bring Ventura back to a three-point lead, 21-18, and another Murdoch winner sent the crowd into a frenzy. Murdoch then closed out the set with another kill as VC even the match with a 25-19 win in the second set.
VB��: Murdoch with another winner at #setpoint. @VCVolleyball evens the match 25-19 over @MC_Raiders in the 2nd set. @ventura_college @vcscolleges @TheAcornSports @cccwvca pic.twitter.com/aGbBztgfSQ— VCPirateAthletics (@VCAthletics) September 29, 2022
The Pirates took and maintained a small advantage in the third set. Knowles hit a pair of winners for the 19-16 margin and then hit another kill to make it 22-18. Mulville closed out the set with a big right hand in the middle for the 25-22 Pirate win.
VB��: Katey Mulville with the winner on #setpoint! @VCVolleyball takes a 2-1 lead over @MC_Raiders winning 3rd set 25-22. @vcscolleges @ventura_college @TheAcornSports @cccwvca pic.twitter.com/h0TG9szvSu— VCPirateAthletics (@VCAthletics) September 29, 2022
Another close contest followed in the fourth set with Ventura opening up a small margin early. Murdoch had a kill and Brianna Morrison hit a winner for a 12-9 Ventura lead. Murdoch and Knowles hit back-to-back winners for a 14-10 advantage while a Kylie Ibbotson kill and an ace from Averi Carter make the score 19-15. The raiders worked back to within one, 22-21, but VC did not flinch, claiming the victory on Carter's winner on match point.
VB��: Averi Carter with the kill on #matchpoint! #2 @VCVolleyball claims 4th set 25-23 to defeat #11 @MC_Raiders in four. Pirates move to 13-0 on the season. #GoPiratesGo #VCWePlayHard @ventura_college @vcscolleges @TheAcornSports @cccwvca pic.twitter.com/NYImjcHiXa— VCPirateAthletics (@VCAthletics) September 29, 2022
While Knowles led the charge, Murdoch contributed 14 kills and 11 digs. Ibbotson and Mulville had six and five kills, respectively and Amelie Zubia recorded 17 assists with 11 digs. Autumn Rojelio Moreno anchored the defense with 28 digs and Carter was the fifth Pirate in double-figures defensively with 14 digs.
Ventura faces another early-WSC test on Friday Sept. 30 with a match at Santa Barbara City College beginning at 6:00 pm.