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Freshman setter, Laura Willoughby, stare intensely at the ball while, sophomore middle blocker/outside hitter, Hope White, prepares to hit the ball over the net Saturday, Sept. 28. Gorillas took a loss against MSSU. Kamryn Kelley

Gorillas defeated by NWMU, UCM, defeats Newman

The volleyball team had two matches over the weekend against Northwest Missouri on Friday, Sept. 27 and Central Missouri on Saturday, Sept. 28 and the Gorillas lost both games (1-3, 0-3). The team managed to bounce back and bring home a win against Newman on Tuesday, Oct. 1 (3-2).  

Head coach Jen Gomez thought the team didn’t do so bad at times, but couldn’t manage to get ahead and win the games against NWMU and UCM.   

“… I thought we played well at times against Northwest,” Gomez said. “We played them pretty tough. I wasn’t necessarily pleased with the outcome because I thought we had our opportunities to… win set two and we had some other opportunities there. But overall (at) that game I thought we played at a pretty high level. (On) Saturday, I think Central Missouri is always tough and I think that we hung with them at time, but we just made to many errors. And then last night, winning a five-set match against Newman, it shouldn’t have went five. We should have played better out of the shoot, starting off better, but we didn’t. But we had to learn from that. What I was proud of yesterday was the fact that our kids were able to pull out a five-set win and overcome that adversity.”  

According to Gomez, the outside players and the defense was solid.   

“I thought our outsides did pretty well over the weekend,” Gomez said. “I thought at times our defense did a pretty good job as far as playing defense around the block. I thought that we did a good job of getting Morgan Henning, our middle, involved and she really kind of shined and (took) charge. And then last night, I don’t really have a lot of great things that happened except for the fact that we were able to pull out a five-set win.”  

A couple of players stood out to Gomez during the games over the weekend and on Tuesday.   

“Over the weekend, I thought that our outsides, Meg Auten and Erika Ivkov, played pretty decently,” Gomez said. “But yesterday, Morgan was the shining star. I think she had like 18 kills or something, she did well.”  

Gomez hopes to see the team improve in several aspects of the game before their next match including serving better and blocking more efficiently.  

“Well, we play tomorrow at Missouri Western and I need us to come out and execute the game plan faster,” Gomez said. “I need us to serve more aggressively. I need us to get more blocks because we didn’t get any blocks last night and that was kind of frustrating. So, I need out block to be better to help our defense and kind of get us some momentum going.” 

The Gorilla’s next game is a home game against Emporia State University on Friday, Oct. 11. The game will be held on Whetzel Court at the John Lance Arena at 6 p.m.

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