EDWARDSVILLE, Ill. - The Fighting Leatherneck volleyball team (0-2) dropped a pair of non-conference matches to open the 2012 season in the SIU-Edwardsville Cougar Classic Saturday (August 25), first to Montana State 3-2 and then to SIU-Edwardsville 3-1.
Sophomore Ann Miller led all Leathernecks with 33 kills on the day, while senior Katie Hosteng chipped in 21. Sarah Fetter finished the day with 92 assists, including 50 in the first match, a career-high. Senior Bridget Murphy led the Leathernecks in the digs category with 39 on the day.
Western Illinois vs. Montana State
The volleyball squad opened their 2012 campaign with a 3-2 loss to the Montana State Bobcats in their opening match of the 2012 SIU-Edwardsville Cougar Classic.
"Unfortunately we did not come out on top during our match against
Montana State," said head coach April Hall. "MSU is a great team that brought a high level of
competition and intensity to the floor. Although we lost sight of our
goals and our new program mentality, We did have moments of greatness
through performances by Ann Miller, Katie Hosteng, Sarah Fetter and
Bridget Murphy. We fought hard for five sets but in the end we
couldn't come out with the win."
After earning a win in the first set (25-23) and falling to the Bobcats in set two (25-19), Western coasted to a 25-14 victory in set three, never surrendering its lead. The Leathernecks continued their attack into the fourth set building a 20-16 lead, but MSU tallied six straight points and used a comeback victory to knot things up at 2-2 before earning the fifth set victory (15-8).
The Leathernecks had three players finish with 10 or more kills in sophomore Ann Miller who recorded 17, Katie Hosteng who tallied 12 and Samantha Fournier who had 10. Heather Smith (nine) and Mallory Gibson (seven) each contributed to Western's attack as well.
Junior Sarah Fetter racked up a game-high 50 assists in the five sets, tying her career high. She had 50 assists at South Dakota last season. Senior Bridget Murphy led all players with 19 digs in the match. Sophomore Molly Murphy (9) and Miller (8) also helped out in the dig department.
Western Illinois vs. SIU-Edwardsville
Western dropped their second match of the day to hosts SIU-Edwardsville, 3-1. The Leathernecks fell short in the first two sets against the Cougars, 25-15 and 25-18, before downing the invite hosts 25-22 in set three. SIU-E then defeated Western 25-18 in the fourth set to earn the match victory.
"SIU-E came out strong and our efforts were not able to match up," said coach Hall. "Each match we play we learn more about ourselves as a team. We refuse to look back on today with regret as we had several teachable moments and now fully understand where we need to go from here in order to be successful. This team has made so many strides and I am hopeful we will be able to show those strides with a win tomorrow against Santa Clara."
After a 50-set performance against SIU-E, Sarah Fetter contributed another 42 helpers in Western's match versus the Cougars. Bridget Murphy again led the team in digs with 20. Ann Miller (17) and Bailey Kaloupek (15) each added to the defensive end of the court.
Western concludes action in the 2012 Cougar Classic versus Santa Clara tomorrow morning at 11 a.m.