Bobcats outlasted again, LIU’s experience shines
The Bobcats continued their struggles in five-set games as Long Island edged Quinnipiac’s volleyball team, 3-2, Saturday at Burt Kahn Court.
“I think it comes down to experience, we have no seniors,” Quinnipiac head coach Robin Sparks said. “Only two players on the team have more than two years experience so we will have to learn how to play the fifth set with more experience.”
Quinnipiac (6-18, 4-6 NEC) is now 1-6 on the year in games that go to the maximum of five sets.
The first set started off well for the Bobcats, as Kelby Carey got the first point with a kill straight through the arms of two defenders. However the remainder of the set wasn’t as successful as Long Island (8-17, 7-5 NEC) won 25-22.
In the next set, Quinnipiac dominated throughout thanks to an 8-0 run to start the match behind the serves of Kayla Lawler. She added two aces in the 25-14 set victory and five in the match to improve her national ranking in service aces per set. The team finished with 10 aces.
Lawler attributed her skills in serving to the amount of time the team focuses on serving in practice.
“During the game Coach Ron [Sparks] gives us the zone to hit based on his scouting reports of the other team which is a huge help,” Lawler said.
Lawler and Carey also registered double-doubles in the game, as Lawler finished with 10 digs and 47 of Quinnipiac’s 55 assists. Carey had 16 kills and 11 digs.
In the must-win fourth set, the Bobcats and Blackbirds exchanged the lead several times.
Quinnipiac pulled out in front late and sealed the set with a smash into the hole of Long Island’s defense by Amanda Armstrong to win 25-23.
In the fifth and final set to 15, Quinnipiac fell in a 5-0 hole. Logan Riker’s 24 digs in the match weren’t enough to help the Bobcats out of trouble as Long Island outside hitter Artisha Jackson struck a service ace for the 15-10 match victory.
The Bobcats face NEC leading Sacred Heart Sunday. The Pioneers are a perfect 10-0 in NEC play and have won 17 straight overall.
“We’ve played them before and they aren’t anything that scares us, they are just incredibly consistent,” Sparks said. “If we can play consistent we will be okay. Its nothing we aren’t capable of doing, its just a matter of if we execute.”
Photo credit: Amanda Shulman