After back-to-back wins against Cheyney University, WCU was visited by Millersville University and pulled out a hard-fought victory in 4 sets (22-25, 23-25, 25-16, 22-25). A strong team hitting percentage of .341 in the second set may have proved to be a turning point as this put West Chester up two sets to none. This put their PSAC record at six wins and three losses.
Besides leading the team in kills with 17, Karleigh Lutz was all over the stat sheet in this one. She added an ace, a block and 14 digs as well. Junior Abbie Dischert was second on the team with 12 kills and also an ace. Nicki Yates was also all over the stat sheet, most notably leading the team in digs with 32.
Yates also contributed three aces and five assists. Captain Victoria Cruciani was first place in blocks with six. Sophomore Peyton Wright continued to contribute as she has over the past few games with nine kills and three blocks. The two six-footers in Cruciani and Wright proved to be very important on the defensive side in this contest. Jillian Grammer led the team in assists just as she has all seasons with 48, along with 16 digs.
West Chester had little time to rest as they were visited by the 8-0 Shippensburg Raiders. A crowd of 508 attended this big game.
The Raiders left with a 9-0 conference record as the Lady Rams fell to 6-4 in a game that could have went either way (25-23, 25-21, 27-25). Each of the three sets could have easily went in WCU’s favor, but it was not their day. Cruciani and Grammer finished with personal hitting percentages of over .300.
Lutz had another well-rounded game with 17 kills, one block, one ace and 14 digs. Dischert finished in second place in the digs department for the second game in a row with 12. She added an ace as well. Cruciani and Wright finished one and two in blocks again with six and three respectively, displaying another strong defensive performance. Yates led the team in aces with three, and led the team in digs once again with 32. No surprise in the assist department as Grammer finished with a team-leading 48. Grammer also finished the match with 16 assists.
Coach Katherine Bellaver had this to say on the loss, “The Ship match was very competitive and came down to just a few errors on our part. We had opportunities to close out the set but they are a tough team. The team knows we may see them again this season and they are eager to play them again.”
The Lady Rams finish the week with a 6-4 conference record, still giving them a dominating lead in the Southeast Division, with the closest threat to them being East Stroudsburg with a record of 2-7. WCU takes on Kutztown on Friday, October 20, and East Stroudsburg the next day. Later WCU takes on Georgian Court and Edinboro.
Tyler Grace is a first-year student with an undeclared major. He can be reached at TG885739@wcupa.edu.