Wildcats stung by Hornets

Photo by Cade Clark
Weber State University’s Rebecca Fuchs bumps the ball in the last home game. WSU will play at home on Thursday night against Eastern Washington University.

The Weber State University volleyball team fell to California State University, Sacramento on Saturday night. The Wildcats lost in four sets with scores of 20-25, 15-25, 26-24 and 19-25, bringing the team’s Big Sky Conference record to 1-7 and 7-12 overall.

“I think the biggest thing is that we didn’t have all the systems going at once,” said Shanae Burgin, senior captain. “That is one of the most frustrating things, not being able to play the game in one piece.”

Head Coach Tom Peterson said the team’s biggest problem was the amount of errors it had.

“It was a competitive match at their place, and we just made too many errors,” Peterson said.

The Wildcats committed 32 errors throughout the match compared to CSUS’s 26.

“Errors will be our thing from here on out,” Peterson said. “We will be a decent team, a good team, if we will just start lower our hitting errors in particular and the errors that we make that stop us from our own momentum. It’s not just what the other team does; it’s what we do to ourselves.”

Freshman outside hitter Rebecca Fuchs put up her fourth double-double of the season with 14 kills and 10 digs. She also added four blocks and three service aces. Senior setter Caitlin Penrod had 27 assists and eight digs. Freshman middle blocker Audrey Gee put up five blocks. This was the seventh time this season Gee has recorded five or more blocks.

The team put up a total of 38 kills, eight service aces and 10.5 team blocks. CSUS put up 50 kills, five serving aces and 21 team blocks.

The score was tied twice in the first match with one lead change. During the third match, the score was tied 13 times with four lead changes.

“It’s a dynamic game,” Penrod said. “If not all pistols are firing at the same time, things go downhill. We played better together; we’ve been struggling up until now with constant on-and-off play, but this was better as far as team chemistry.”

Burgin said that not only was the team chemistry working, but also the team’s serves.

“Our serving was really good,” Burgin said. “We didn’t have a ton of serving errors, which we were able to be strong in the area that was usually our weakest.”

The team will be working on high-pressure situations and cutting back on errors this week in its practices.

“There will be a lot of pressure situations stimulated in practice this week, and it will get us to react how we should,” Penrod said.

The team will face off against Eastern Washington University on Thursday and Portland State University on Saturday. Both matches will be held in the Swenson Gym.

“Eastern Washington just got their setter back, but we are in the same level,” Peterson said. “We need to beat this team, and we need to beat them at our place. This is a big one for us. We need to use this match as a little bit of a launching pad.”

Penrod also said that, in order to beat EWU, the team needs to exercise better ball control.

“(We need to) just be disciplined all the time with our ball control,” she said. “Whatever it is, just make sure we are focused on controlling our side, giving the ball to the other teams and letting them make the mistakes instead of us getting so wired about it.”