West Chester took on Slippery Rock last Saturday, basically traveling across the whole state of Pennsylvania for this PSAC matchup. WCU took this one in dominating fashion in a sweep (25-16, 26-24, 25-17) with Slippery Rock only providing resistance in the second set. West Chester finished the match with an average team hitting percentage of .301.
Abbie Dischert led the team in kills with 14, she also added three blocks and an assist on the day. Karleigh Lutz led the team in aces and digs, with two and 16 respectively. Lutz added ten kills and Jillian Grammer finished first place once again in the assist column with 37. Nicki Yates chipped in with two assists, 13 digs and two aces.
Team captain Victoria Cruciani had this to say on the team’s play,: “I think we’re all pretty satisfied with how we’ve been playing! There are some little things we want to work on before our final weekend of PSAC play. However, as a whole our synergy is great and we’re looking forward to ending the regular season on a high note!”
West Chester then took on Gannon University in the cozy confines of Sturzebecker Health Science Center. The Lady Ram’s three-game winning streak was broken in a three sets to one defeat (25-18, 17-25, 26-24, 25-18). Besides a pretty good hitting-percentage in the second set, the Rams lacked the efficiency they had in the Slippery Rock game.
Lutz led the team in kills this time around with 11 with Cruciani tying her. Cruciani also had a strong defensive effort with five blocks. Dischert had 10 kills of her own, adding an ace as well. Grammer led the team with two aces, and also in assists with 36. Peyton Wright chipped in two blocks on the defensive side, and Yates reclaimed her spot atop of the digs category with 24. She also had five assists.
Coach Katherine Bellaver had this to say on the loss: “The team played a tough Gannon team on Friday night and came up short 3-1. We had the opportunity to go ahead 2-1 but they took that set 26-24. We were even in many stats and played tough but we are looking to rebound quickly on Saturday which is Senior Day.”
The next day, WCU took on Mercyhurst at home. Mercyhurst has struggled in conference play all seasons and the Lady Rams continued that trend with a sweep (13-25, 22-25, 17-25). West Chester led in all statistical categories in a thoroughly dominating match.
Lutz led the team again with 11 kills, followed by Cruciani with eight and Dischert with seven. Lutz also tied for the lead in aces with two, and Gleason also had two. Senior defensive specialist Lyndsey Iacobelli added in an ace. Allie Duffy set the example on defense with eight blocks. Dischert had four blocks. Grammer continued her dominance in setting the table, she had 35 assists in this contest. Yates led the team in digs again with 17, followed by Gleason with ten and Lutz with eight.
WCU finishes out this stretch with a 2-1 record, adding to an impressive 21-7 overall record and a 10-6 PSAC record. West Chester takes on East Stroudsburg University this Friday and then finish out their regular season against Kutztown on Saturday. Both are away games, but WCU has shown an affinity for laying away from home with a 9-2 away record.
Tyler Grace is a first-year student with an undeclared major. He can be reached at TG885739@wcupa.edu.