Editor’s note: the Aztecs lost 3-1 to Phoenix on Sept. 14
Story, photo and video by JOEL GANTT
The Pima Community College volleyball team traveled to Phoenix for a tournament where they played four matches over two days but the results were all too familiar.
The Aztecs (0-7, 0-3 in Arizona Community College Athletic Conference play) traveled to the Scottsdale Classic Tournament, Sept. 9 and Sept. 10 where they lost all four matches.
Pima opened with a 2-0 loss to Mesa Community College, 25-20 and 28-26. Then the Aztecs lost 2-0 to New Mexico Military Institute, 25-18 and 25-13.
PCC closed out Sept. 9 with a 2-0 loss to Utah State University – College of Eastern Utah 25-22 and 25-14. The Aztecs finished the tournament on Sept. 10 with a 2-0 (25-18 and 25-14) loss to Central Wyoming College.
Pima has not won a conference set since losing 3-1 to No. 18 Arizona Western College to start the year. Last season the Aztecs started with a 13-match losing streak, also with a team of mostly freshmen.
Pima is led by their team captain and lone sophomore, setter Czarina Schutt who leads the team in assists.
“Our team can be very good, sometimes we need to stop thinking so much and just play,” Schutt said. “Consistency will come with experience.”
On Sept. 7 Pima hosted a match against No. 6 Glendale Community College. Pima lost all three sets to Glendale with scores of 25-16, 25-11 and 25-18 respectively.
Schutt led the team with 18 assists; a majority of her assists went to freshman middle blocker Kendra Hall who had a team high five kills. Freshman libero, Brittany Oddo led the Pima defense with six digs on the night.
One week before their match with Glendale they hosted a conference match against Scottsdale Community College.
The first set was close as Pima lost 25-22; sets two and three also went to the Fighting Artichokes with scores of 25-19 and 25-15.
In the loss to Scottsdale freshman outside hitter Kaylee Rakowski had a team high six kills. Schutt had 17 assists and freshman setter Kami Humphrey led the defense with eight digs.
On Sept. 2 Pima had a successful scrimmage against alumni. The Dig Pink match was held to raise funds for breast cancer awareness.
The team will carry this theme for the rest of the season and head coach Dan Bithell urges fans and students to wear pink to all home games this season.
In order to continue fundraising the team is selling pink Aztec volleyball shirts for $15 that will be available at home games and in Bithell’s office, located in the gymnasium.
The next match will be Wednesday Sept. 14 at Phoenix College at 7 p.m. The next home match will be Tuesday, Sept. 20, against South Mountain Community College at 7 p.m.
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Sept. 16: @ Mesa CC,
Sept. 20: South Mountain CC, 7 p.m.
Sept. 21: Chandler-Gilbert CC, 7 p.m.
Sept. 23: @ Cuyamaca
(Calif.) College, 5 p.m.
Sept. 24: San Diego City College Tournament
Sept. 28: @ Yavapai College, 7 p.m.
All home matches are at the West Campus.