RIPON — Kaylee MacDannald soared at the right time for the Manteca volleyball team Wednesday night.
Locked in a five-set battle with Ripon and with the score tied 13-13 in the fifth set, Ripon standout Mia Van Lewen went up for one of her signature kills. With four under her belt in the fifth set alone, Van Lewen would not get No. 5
MacDannald, who finished with five blocks, timed her leap perfectly and stuffed the kill attempt, giving Manteca a one-point lead for teammate Kacy Bolding to put the game away with a kill and give the Buffaloes a hard-fought 27-25, 20-25, 18-25, 25-16, 15-13 non-league win.
“She (Van Lewen) had been consistent with where she was hitting the ball,” MacDannald said. “She just kept pounding the ball and hitting her spots.
“I am very proud of our team and Ripon, too — they played a great game. I just hope we can continue from here on out.”
There were 12 ties in the two-point first-set win for the Buffaloes (1-0) with Abbey Kadillak (25 digs) getting the last two points from the service line, one on an ace and the final point when her service was not returned.
The Indians (2-1) rode the hot hand of Van Lewen and Jordynn Russell (12 kills) to wins in the next two sets, and in the fourth set, despite seven ties, took a 14-11 lead before MacDannald got a kill to give Manteca a 16-15 lead it would not relinquish. The Buffaloes closed the set on a 9-1 lead buoyed by three kills by Kacy Bolding (11 kills, five blocks) and an ace by Olga Perez (two aces).
“Ripon came out ready to play,” Manteca coach Kevin Bolding said. “They were nails. They were digging everything and were all over the court.
“We started out OK but we kind of hit a spot where we relaxed too much, and then both teams started battling back and forth. It was a really great match on both sides.
The Buffaloes’ Kaitlyn Morenzone (22 assists, 10 kills) missed fellow four-year starter Payton Reis, who injured her ankle earlier in the week.
“It was hard losing Payton (Reis) on Monday,” Morenzone said. “We knew we had to fill up the void that she brings to the court.
“We have some young players on the team so we are trying to get everyone on the same page. We have great chemistry and good volleyball IQ.”
Rachel Sausedo had 43 assists and 19 digs for Ripon. Deven Stokes and Brooke Kaiser added 12 digs each.
“We played hard,” Indians coach Tyler White said. “We just made too many errors – that killed us.”
Van Lewen finished with 24 kills, 13 digs and six aces.
“She is our go-to, obviously,” White said of Van Lewen. “We try to feed the ball to her.
“She did a great job tonight and got a lot of great kills for us, but we can’t rely on one player.”
Ripon 2, Manteca 1
The Buffaloes won the first set 25-21 before dropping the next two 18-25, 6-15.
Jaelyn Negranza had 10 service points for Manteca. Kimberly Yu added eight kills and Adrianna Powell had 10 kills.
Manteca 2, Ripon 0
Alyson Schneider dominated from the outside for the Buffaloes and Leilani Rios handled the middle.
Manteca’s Isabella Pires set well for Manteca and Ariana Lowery played well as libero.