Volleyball loses to two ranked teams

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By: Harry Loomis

Despite giving some of the best teams in the nation a run for their money, the Griffons came out without the result they were looking for.

The Griffons fell to No. 14 Northwest Missouri State and No. 3 Washburn before capping off the weekend with an impressive sweep of Emporia State.

The Griffons came out strong in Tuesday’s bout with Northwest, taking the first set 28-26 in a nail-biter before dropping the second set. With the crowd getting loud and excited, the Griffons took a two set to one lead with a dominant 25-18 set three victory. Unfortunately for the Griffons, that’s all they would be able to come up with, as the Bearcats took set four in convincing fashion before winning a winner take all set five by the score of 15-13.

Freshman Allie Kerns, senior Sam Duncan and junior Ali Tauchen led the team in kills with 17, 15 and 13 kills respectively. The loss continued an unfortunate two-year stretch for the Griffons, as they have lost the past four matches to the Bearcats, with the last win coming in 2017.

Thursday night against Washburn wasn’t quite as close, though the Griffons still put a tough fight against the third best team in the nation. Though the first two sets were fairly close, both fell in the Ichabod’s favor, as they found themselves up 2-0. The Griffons refused to give in, however, taking set three 25-22. Unfortunately, the Ichabods proved that they were just too much to handle as they ultimately took the match with a 25-19 fourth-set victory.

Senior Maryssa Recio led the Griffons in kills with 15. Tauchen provided 10 kills along with a team-high five blocks. The loss was the Griffons third-straight loss against the Ichabods.

Though they didn’t get the results, the Griffons were playing solid volleyball. Going against an inferior opponent in Emporia State on Saturday, the Griffons kept up the level of play and earned a dominant victory, winning all three sets by scores of 25-18, 25-17 and 25-14 to complete the season sweep against the Hornets. The win capped off a dominant day of Griffon sports against the Hornets, as the volleyball game came right after the football team’s 28-0 victory.

Tauchen was, once again, the team leader in kills, racking up 16 while also registering a trio of blocks. Freshman Jessica Sachsen and senior Lauren Murphy each contributed a pair of aces.

Even though they only went 1-2 over the week, head coach Marian Carbin was encouraged by her team’s fight against some top competition.

“I thought we played really well,” Carbin said.  “I thought steadily throughout the week we showed signs.”

Looking ahead, the Griffons play the next four matches on the road starting Tuesday against a talented Central Missouri squad that bested Missouri Western earlier in the season.

Despite the long road schedule upcoming, Carbin believes all the road games they’ve already played will help them out.

“We’ve kind of been road warriors,” Carbin said. “Keeping our routine as normal as possible the day of is important.”

The Griffons return home on Nov. 7 for a clash with Fort Hays State.