Despite season ending playoff loss, Women’s Volleyball was a success this year

Nov. 15, 2010

Ryan Adams
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After a decent season, the Mountain Lions Volleyball team hoped to take advantage of their playoff seed by playing a beatable team; unfortunately, however, a different story unfolded.

The team’s hopes for an RMAC title were dashed by a Mesa State Maverick team that came ready to play.

The Mountain Lions were defeated 3-1 against a number two seeded Mesa State (23-25, 25-17, 25-20, 25-19).

Things appeared promising for the ladies in the first five minutes of the game, but Mesa State proved to be too powerful for the seven seeded Mountain Lions.

Mesa State created a lot of errors early on with five out of UCCS’ seven points coming from errors. They quickly overcame the nerves, though, to create a 13-10 lead over the Mountain Lions. UCCS came all the way back to win the set with key kills by juniors Molly Crockett, Alex Nuttall, Jenica Shippy and senior Nicole Pederson. The Mountain Lions won the first set 25-23.

Mesa State stormed back, building an 8-1 lead with key kills by senior Meagan Bosch and eventually creating an 18-10 lead over the Mountain Lions. UCCS couldn’t storm back for the second set, with Mesa winning 25-17 and tying the match 1-1.

Aces continued to pour upon the Mountain Lions, as Maverick senior Whitney Howard got two and kick started her team to a jump out lead of 13-7. Just as it was in the regular season, the resilient Mountain Lions busted back into the picture with Pederson and sophomores Lindsey Stich and Nikki Kinzer leading the charge, putting UCCS on top 17-16. Mesa State replied with a 7-2 run that ended any chance for UCCS to win the tie-breaking set, and the Mavericks won the set 25-20, sticking the women in their first hole of the game.

The Mavericks jumped out to another big lead, once again putting the Mountain Lions in a six point deficit for the first part of the fourth set. UCCS tried with a mighty effort to pull close, but Mesa shot it down with kills and aces to go up 18-8. Mesa could not put out the fire, however, and let the Mountain Lions crawl back within three points at 19-16 with kills by Shippy, Pederson and junior Sonja Johnson.

That’s all the irrepressible lady Mountain Lions could muster, as they fought back throughout the match. The Mavericks put up five killer points that put the matchup at game point. UCCS tried to fend off the defeat three times, but the Mavericks prevailed, winning the fourth and final set 25-19. Player highlights included stellar performances from Alex Nuttall, contributing with 13 kills and 10 digs, while Nikki Kinzer added eight kills. Senior Kendall Utz wrapped up her Mountain Lion career with a team high 11 digs, while senior Nicole Pederson concluded her collegiate career with seven kills and four assisted blocks.