GVSU falls on the road to Ferris State 3-0

The Lakers are now 13-11 (7-6 GLIAC) on the season

By Brady McAtamney | 11/2/16 9:14pm

GVL / Luke Holmes - Jillian Butsavich (12) high fives her teammate. GVSU volleyball lost to Michigan Tech on Saturday, Oct. 29. 2016.
by Luke Holmes and Luke Holmes / The Lanthorn

The Grand Valley State volleyball team dropped a weekday matchup against the rival Ferris State Bulldogs Tuesday, Nov. 1 by a tally of 3-0 in Big Rapids.

Though the first and third sets were close, the Lakers were unable to pick up a set win and carry the spark they gained from last weekend’s split. Ferris State now sits at 21-5 (12-1 GLIAC), while the Lakers dropped to 13-11 (7-6 GLIAC).

Ferris won each set by scores of 25-22, 25-10 and 25-21.

The story of this loss and others seems to be that GVSU, as a unit, does not quite yet have a player who can step up in key situations.

“We just need to get a little tougher," said GVSU coach Deanne Scanlon. "We’re struggling to find someone who can make a big play when we need them to.

"There’s a point in every single game where that set can kind of turn and the moment will swing one way or another. In those moments, we’re not very good. There’s nobody to step up and make that swing or make a good serve. We just don’t have somebody to step up and get us through.”

The Bulldogs, as a team, tallied 10 more points (51 to 41), four more kills (37 to 33), one more ace (3 to 2), five more blocks (11 to 6), three more assists (34 to 31) and eight more digs (41 to 33) than the Lakers, and hit .237 to GVSU’s .075.

“I just think that we didn’t have the fight like we usually do,” said GVSU sophomore Taylor Stewart. “We were really focusing on our mistakes instead of moving forward and forgetting about them and they just built up. Finally in the third, we started getting going and picking it up. It was just a little too late.”

Sophomore Staci Brower led the Lakers in both kills and blocks, notching nine kills and 3.5 blocks. Sophomores Jillian Butsavich and Shannon Winicki managed to pick up seven and six kills, respectively, with Butsavich adding 1.5 blocks. Junior Katie Olson and Stewart each handed out 13 assists. Senior Amanda Glaza led the team in digs with eight.

The one constant in the loss was the calming presence on the court of Butsavich. When things got tough, she was able to talk to her teammates and calm them down, keeping their heads in the right place.

“I know that sometimes if you make a mistake or an error it can get in a player's head, so I try to let it go and make it up on the next play or the next set," Butsavich said. "That helps, when you have teammates that trust in you and give you support."

Looking to right the ship, GVSU will hit the road again shortly when the Lakers make road trips to take on the Saginaw Valley State Cardinals (16-8, 9-4 GLIAC) Friday, Nov. 4 and the Lake Superior State Lakers (3-22, 0-13) Saturday, Nov. 5.

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