The Pittsburg State volleyball team is riding a five game winning streak after winning four straight games in the Gorilla Classic Tournament last week.
After returning from a trip to Fort Lauderdale, Florida, the Gorillas knew what they were capable of. After a 2-2 record in their Labor Day weekend tournament, they had to quickly regroup and get their minds and bodies ready for the Gorilla Classic tournament just four days after they got back from Florida.
The Gorilla Classic included Northwestern Oklahoma State University, University of Sioux Falls, Truman University, and University of Saint Mary’s.
The Gorillas beat three of the teams in straight sets and pulled out a five set victory against the University of Sioux Falls.
After watching some game film and realizing what needed to be worked on in order to be successful, head coach Jen Gomez wanted to focus on their defense.
“Our defense was great,” Gomez said. “We made some amazing plays that kept the ball off the floor and frustrated the other teams. We were very relentless on the defensive end.”
Not only was the defense a highlight of the tournament, but the team’s cohesiveness seemed to be much improved.
“Overall, we definitely played more cohesively,” senior outside hitter Meg Auten said. “Our team this year is so unselfish and really wants to play and win for each other.”
The tournament proved to be a success but winning didn’t necessarily come easy for Pitt State. Down 3-8 in the fifth set to a talented Sioux Falls team, Pitt State seemed to come together and pulled out a victory.
“Our team plays very cohesively,” Gomez said. “They never gave up, even when we were down five points against University of Sioux Falls. They fought so hard to come back and played as a unit!”
The perseverance shown by the Gorillas is something that can lead them to more victories this season and is a part of the team’s game that has already improved immensely.
With every bit of success that comes the Gorilla’s way, there is always room for improvement so they can reach all of their goals.
“I think our focus moving forward will be to sure up our blocking and run an effective offense that gets everyone involved,” senior setter Brianna Richard said.
Blocking was a point of emphasis that coach Gomez wanted to focus on last week and could still be polished and will improve the Gorilla’s game even more.
“I still want us to be more consistent with our serve receive passing,” Gomez said.
The MIAA (Mid-America Intercollegiate Athetics) conference is a very tough conference, and to be the best, you have to beat the best. The Gorillas realize that and will continue practicing to perfect their game in hopes to be on top of the standings at the end of the season.
The Pittsburg State volleyball team will be back at home on September 17 to take on the Bronchos of Central Oklahoma and then will head to Joplin to take on Missouri Southern on September 18.
Fans and students can find a copy of their schedule on the Pitt State athletics website as well as on posters around campus.