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Gorillas tame the Lions in volleyball

Senior middle hitter Hope White serves the ball to the opposing team, Missiouri Southern on Oct. 12. White had five kills throughout the game. Megan Brownell

The Pittsburg State volleyball team kept their home court winning streak alive after beating the Lions of Missouri Southern in three straight sets on Tuesday, Oct. 12. 

The Gorillas now have a 7-0 record at home after Tuesday’s match against the Lions, now sitting at an overall record of 11-6. The Gorillas have always felt they had what it takes to be atop the MIAA (Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletics Association), and they are pushing their way towards the top. The Pittsburg State volleyball team now is in fifth place out of 11 teams. 

Tuesday was in favor of the Gorillas from the first play of the game. Pitt State never trailed in the first set, winning 25-14.

The second set was much of the same, dominance from the Gorillas. Pitt State jumped out to a 4-0 lead and never looked back, winning set two by a score of 25-13. 

The third set was a bit closer, but still resulted in a Gorilla win. The Gorillas trailed 11-10 to give the Lions their first lead of the match, but the Gorillas quicky responded and won the set 25-19. 

“I think we played pretty well overall,” said head coach Jen Gomez. “We served tough and kept them out of a system offensively. I thought Meg Auten and Hope White had a good night.”

Keeping the Lions out of a system on offense was exactly what the Gorillas executed to perfection. Missouri Southern had just a .031 hit percentage throughout the match. 

“I feel our team as a whole performed well,” said junior Janae Thurston. “Everyone that came in the game did their part… Our team’s biggest strength is the meshing and fun we have paying with each other. Everyone supports everyone, and everyone gets excited and that is a lot of fun to play with.”

The team realized that if they put all of their hard work and talent together, they can be tough to beat, and that was one of the takeaways Coach Gomez believes is the next step in their team’s success.

“We need to take away that if we pass well, serve tough, and stay aggressive that we can be a pretty good and competitive team,” Gomez said.

Communication is the one thing that Thurston believes can still be improved upon that will take the team to the next level.

Pittsburg State also had a road battle against Emporia State and Washburn on Oct. 8 and 9. 

The Gorillas came out victorious in three sets against the Hornets of Emporia State but fell to the number one ranked Ichabods of Washburn in three sets. 

Up next for the Gorillas is a road trip to the University of Nebraska Kearney and Fort Hays State University. The Gorillas will return to Pittsburg on Oct. 22 to take on the Bearcats of Northwest Missouri State.

To view the team’s full schedule, go online to pittstategorillas.com and also look for posters around campus. Tickets can be purchased at the ticket office, with students getting in free with their student ID. 

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