Aiko Waters and Phina Leilua, the lone team at the California Community College Beach Volleyball Pairs State Championships for El Camino College, advanced to the Round of 16 after finishing in the top two of their pool Friday afternoon at West Valley College.
Waters and Leilua finished as the runners up in Pool Five, winning their final match of the day in three sets to clinch second and a spot in Saturday's Round of 16.
The Warriors duo started off the day against Michelle Mason and Claudia Mathews of MiraCosta, the No. 5 seed from Southern California and No. 9 overall. It was a tight match with the teams splitting the first two sets in overtime. In the end, Mason and Mathews pulled out a 15-8 win in the third set to take the match. They would go on to win Pool 5 later in the day.
In their second match of the day, Waters and Leilua swept past Mikeila Banda and Haley Leifheit, the No. 4 seed from Northern California and No. 8 seed overall. The victory eliminated the top seed in Pool 5 and sent the Warriors tandem to the precipice of the next round, needing to win their final match to advance.
Leilua and Waters faced Morgan Wright and Kaylin Henderson, the No. 24 team overall. The Warriors dropped the opening set 21-19 but took the second, 21-16 to force a deciding set; the Warriors second three-set match of the day.
The Warriors pulled things out with a 15-10 win in set three on a kill from Leilua to advance to the Round of 16 as the Pool 5 Runners-Up.
Waters and Leilua will take on Emma Blockhus and Mapuhola Sekona of West Valley in the next round. The tandem from West Valley went undefeated in their pool and did not drop a set in any of their three matches.
The Round of 16 gets underway Saturday at 9 a.m. The CCCAA Beach Volleyball Pairs State Championship Match is scheduled for 2:30 p.m. on Saturday.
CCCAA BEACH VOLLEYBALL PAIRS STATE CHAMPIONSHIPS POOL 5 PLAY
Seed Team Record
* - Pool 5 Winner
** - Pool 5 Runner-Up
- Henderson/Wright (WV) def. Banda/Leifheit (GAV) 21-15, 23-21
- Mason/Mathews (MC) def. Leilua/Waters (ECC) 20-22, 23-21, 15-8
- Leilua/Waters (ECC) def. Banda/Leifheit (GAV) 21-16, 22-20
- Mason/Mathews (MC) def. Henderson/Wright (WV) 20-22, 21-18, 15-13
- Leilua/Waters (ECC) def. Henderson/Wright (WV) 19-21, 21-16, 15-10
- Banda/Leifheit (GAV) def. Mason/Mathews (MC) Forfeit (21-0, 21-0)