The University Park Classic Volleyball Tournament opened tonight
at Moby Arena as the Rams butted heads with the Ohio Bobcats,
handing them their second loss of the season.
Ohio, the projected favorites of the East Division of the
Mid-American Conference, fell to Rams in four games. This advances
CSU to a 6-1 record overall as Ohio falls to 6-2.
“I think Ohio State is a pretty good team and I think this was a
pretty good win. I was especially pleased with game one,” said head
coach Tom Hilbert after the match.
The first game came down to a whisker as the Rams narrowly
defeated Ohio 34-32.
“Once you do it once, you know you can do it again,” said junior
right side hitter Dre Downs after the Rams pulled out a win in this
clutch first game. “It really defines the character of the team if
you can win in a situation like that.”
The net play was a catfight as senior center Katie Jo
Shirley-Cahoon posted four of her season-high nine blocks in the
first match alone.
“We’ve been working on blocking for awhile,” Shirley-Cahoon
said. “It was a good game to start out with.”
This emphasis on blocking really took its toll in the first game
as the Rams tamed the Bobcat’s attack with nine team blocks.
CSU came into the second game charging, letting their momentum
carry them to a 28-14 lead. The Bobcats could not find the floor
for six successive points and eventually ended up on the wrong side
of a 30-19 match.
However, the Bobcats landed on their feet after CSU allowed Ohio
to claw their way back to the court in the third game as the
Bobcats scratched out a 30-21 win. The Rams wracked up 11 hitting
errors and five service errors. They also posted a paltry .150
attack percentage compared to the Bobcat’s .323.
“The best thing to do is just walk from one court to the next
and say that we are going to be better,” said Hilbert in response
to this third game.
The Rams regained their composure in the fourth game to win
Senior setter Melissa Courtney posted 57 assists in the effort,
14 more than Ohio’s East Division Player of the Week and Furman
Tournament MVP, Briana Adamovsky.
Adamovsky, a senior setter, is currently in hot pursuit of the
Bobcat all-time assist record.
Junior outside hitter Tess Rogers reignited the Rams with kills
by posting 16 while Shirley-Cahoon added 14 and junior outside
hitter Casey Bauer knocked down a dozen.
Senior outside hitter Becky Sarauer also played well coming in
off the bench, tallying a .667 attack percentage.
“Putting Becky in towards the end of the game gave us some
velocity that we needed. We needed someone to come in and hit
hard,” Hilbert said.
Ram volleyball action will continue as CSU squares off against
No. 22 Pepperdine tomorrow night in the second round of the UPC
“I’m excited because my mom and dad get to watch. Moby (arena)
is such a great place to play and it’s just nice to show it off to
people who enjoy watching good volleyball,” said Courtney, who is
looking forward to the televised game.
The match will start at 7:35 p.m. and will be televised on Fox
Sports Rocky Mountain.