This archived article was written by: Brooke Anderson
Going undefeated after eight matches puts USU Eastern’s volleyball team in a place they have never been – no volleyball program at this University has ever started the season with eight wins!
With four victories under their belts, the ladies headed out of state again last weekend.
Head Coach Danielle Jensen and Assistant Coach Stacy Mortensen traveled with the eagles to the Rough Rider Invitational in Prescott, Ari Sept. 1-2. They finished with an outstanding 4 wins and 0 losses for the tournament. This adds to their total preseason record of 8 wins and 0 losses. This has never happened in the history of Utah State Eastern Women’s volleyball which began in 2010.
At the Rough Rider Invitational, the team played New Mexico Military Institute to start the weekend. With an impressive score of 15-7 in the fifth set, they eventually won three out of five sets to win the match.
Freshman, Megan Gurr, who is currently second in the NJCAA for digs with an impressive 183 digs, states that the hard-earned win happened because they, “Never backed down and stayed fighting and playing as a team.”
They continued their streak by winning three out of four sets to secure the match win over Eastern Arizona College Friday evening.
Saturday morning the Eagles played one of their hardest opponents, Yavapai College. The hosting team, Yavapai College, came into the match-up with home-court advantage. The Lady Eagles won the first set 27-25, then lost the second set by a heartbreaking gap of 11-25. The Eagles began battling back only to lose the third set by a slim 25-27. Their fighting paid off with a 26-24 win in the fourth set, finally winning the nail biter match with 15-13 in the fifth.
Sophomore team captain Jaelyn Olsen believes that some of the team’s struggle was caused by learning rotations and getting to know the rhythm of each other as a new team. They each come to the court with different playing styles learned over their years in the sport. She was pleased to see that in the end they, “All came together and realized that the only way they were going to win that game was by playing as a team.” In the last set, “every single person stepped up and filled their role.”
The Eagles finished the successful weekend with a 3-1 win against South Mountain Community College.
The volleyball team is heading to the Blue Mountain Inn and Suites Invitational in Rangely, Colo Sept 8-9. They start the tournament off with a match against No. 6-ranked Western Nebraska Community College, whose current record is 7-2.
Follow the team’s season on Facebook at USU Eastern Women’s Volleyball. Their games will be live streamed on that page as well. This weekend games are at 8 a.m and 2 p.m. MST on Friday, Sept. 8, and 8 a.m. and noon MST on Saturday, Sept. 9.
Read more about the team, their games, and their stats at usueasternathletics.com