Lakers go 2-1 in GLIAC-GLVC Crossover
The No. 11 Grand Valley State University volleyball team traveled to compete in the annual GLIAC-GLVC Crossover Tournament over the weekend in Aurora, Ill. Coming into the tournament, the Lakers had hopes of continuing their 11-game win streak against Lewis, Missouri S&T and Rockhurst.
GVSU began the weekend in impressive fashion, defeating fourth-seeded Lewis 3-1. After dropping the opening frame 20-25, the Lakers came back strong, winning the next three sets, 25-23, 25-21, 25-20.
“I liked what I saw out of my team after dropping that initial set,” said GVSU coach Deanne Scanlon. “They showed the ability to make mid-game adjustments and play to their potential down the stretch.”
Senior setter Kaitlyn Wolters was active for the Lakers as she tallied seven kills, three aces, 48 assists and 14 digs. Wolters said she and her teammates didn’t miss a beat in the first match.
“We carried a sense of confidence with us into this tournament and it showed,” she said.
In the second tilt of the weekend, however, the 12-match win streak came to an end.
Sixth-seeded Missouri S&T downed GVSU on Saturday in straight sets (3-25, 23-25, 23-25). It was the first time in 51 matches that GVSU was swept.
“The loss was especially disappointing because of how good we were playing lately,” said senior libero Christina Canepa. “We just couldn’t seem to make the basic plays in that one and weren’t able to recover after dropping the first set. It was definitely the low point of the weekend.”
Missouri S&T outplayed GVSU in nearly all facets of the match. The Miners led in kills (48-36), hitting percentage (.237 to .151), assists (44-33), digs (43-40) and blocks (10-9).
“We looked like we were in a groove after being up 16-8 in the first set, but then things started to unravel for us,” Scanlon said. “We just couldn’t seem to do anything right out there.”
The loss earlier in the day to Missouri S&T didn’t seem to have a lasting effect on the Lakers. GVSU closed out the tournament with a four-set victory over Rockhurst (25-21, 25-23, 17-25, 25-22).
“After the loss to Missouri S&T, we knew we had to rebound with a good performance,” Wolters said. “Going 1-2 wasn’t an option for us, so we really just buckled down and played what I thought was our best volleyball of the weekend.”
Betsy Ronda led the Lakers with 16 kills. Wolters paced GVSU with 51 assists and Canepa led with 25 digs.
The win improves GVSU’s all-time record in the GLIAC-GLVC Crossover Tournament record to 15-6.
“The win against Rockhurst was huge for us,” Scanlon said. “After the loss to Missouri S&T, I was a little worried how we would respond. This is a veteran group, and they knew the level of play that they were capable of. You kind of wish you could’ve seen that all weekend, but we’re definitely happy with how we ended things in Aurora.”
The Lakers return home for matches against Northern Michigan and Michigan Tech next weekend.