The UCCS Volleyball team concluded their weekend with a 1-1 even record after back-to-back home games, after finishing with a win against the Western Colorado Mountaineers on Oct. 15 and following that with a 2-3 loss against the Fort Lewis Skyhawks on Oct. 16.
UCCS has now had seven games that lasted five sets; six out of seven of the games have been at home and they are 3-4 in those matches. UCCS has a 5-12 overall record and a 2-8 RMAC record.
The first set against the Mountaineers ended with a UCCS win 25-21, thanks to help from outside hitter/right side redshirt junior Lauryn Shockley, who had the high of five kills. Outside hitter/right side senior Maren Burkhart and outside hitter/right side sophomore Camden Strain added four kills apiece.
The Mountaineers won the next two sets, 25-19 for both. UCCS’ struggles were mostly from attacking errors as they committed 17 of them. They took advantage of the mistakes with an offensive game that included 14 kills and a .429 hitting percentage.
With UCCS down 2-1, they needed to win the next two sets to avoid the loss — and they did just that.
The Mountain Lions finished off the Mountaineers in the fourth set with a close 27-25. About midway through the set, UCCS was behind 20-16. A 5-1 run tied the match, ending with a set-winning kill by Strain to win.
Middle blocker redshirt junior Grace Ferguson helped tie the fifth set for the ninth and final time after three leads changed. Outside hitter/right side redshirt junior Hannah Ammerman and Ferguson assisted each other, causing UCCS to take the lead. After that, it was the Mountain Lions’ match.
Shockley led both teams with 19 kills — not the first time she has done this. She also hit a .333 at the net and added eight digs and three blocks.
The next day, on Oct. 16, UCCS was at home again, playing against the Skyhawks.
UCCS started the match strong after Shockley scored the opening point. The Mountain Lions would end up winning the first set 25-22. Ammerman and Ferguson assisted each other in a similar fashion as the last set against the Mountaineers.
The momentum carried into the second set with another UCCS win. This time Ammerman and Burkhart worked together to block the Skyhawks’ final attack to seal the win.
UCCS headed into the third set with a 2-0 lead. Head coach Chrissy Elder introduced some new players to the game in the third set, including outside hitter/right side redshirt freshman Raegen Emery and outside hitter/right side redshirt sophomore Jenna Szilagyi.
The Mountain Lions trailed early in the set, 5-15, and never found their footing, losing it 18-25. This continued into the fourth set, which the Skyhawks won 25-22.
With the fifth set being the tie breaker, the teams began close with a 13-13 tie early in the set. The Skyhawks took over and scored two straight points, winning the set 15-13 and winning the entire match 3-2.
According to Go Mountain Lions, UCCS ended with 54 kills and the team hit .237 on 139 attempts. Shockley led UCCS with 18 kills; she also had nine digs and two blocks.
UCCS Volleyball will be home to host Colorado Mesa University on Friday, Oct. 22 at 7 p.m. and Westminster College on Oct. 23 at 5 p.m.