This archived article was written by: Riley Spears
With the season past the halfway point, the lady Eagles now have their chance to show all the teams they can play better than before. They had their chance against Southern Idaho who is ranked eighth in the nation and against Northern Idaho. Their only conference win in the first half of the season came from Colorado Northwestern Community College.
CEU traveled to the College of Southern Idaho in Twin Falls on Thursday, Oct. 11 to try to even the score after a 30-22, 30-19 and 30-19 loss in straight games in their last contest. They went to CSI knowing it would not be easy to beat the Idaho Golden Eagles after being beat in every aspect of the game the last time around. The match ended up with the score mirroring their last match with a loss in straight games with scores of 30-12, 30-21 and 30-22.
“Our trip to CSI and NIC was somewhat successful in that, even though we lost both matches in three, we were able to successfully accomplish some goals that we set,” comments Coach Brent Martindale.
The lady Eagles traveled to Northern Idaho on Saturday, Oct. 13. CEU lost to Northern Idaho earlier in the year with a score of 30-27, 30-22 and 30-10. In that match CEU showed a lot of hope, especially in the first game by losing only by three points. However CEU’s outcome stayed the same dropping all three games 30-25, 30-19 and 30-19. The ladies showed promise in the first game but fell apart in the final two.
“We need to believe more that we can play better. I think, at times, we are too worried about making mistakes and losing, when we should be trying to play relaxed and fun. It is possible to be intense and still have fun when you play volleyball,” said Martindale. Niki Griffiths was the highlight player for CEU having six kills.
The women did have a bright part of the week getting another conference win against Colorado Northwestern. This team has been CEU’s highlight of the season getting wins in both outings against the young Colorado volleyball program. “Against Colorado, we came out a little tight and made a few too many mistakes. We still did what we needed and won. In game two we made some changes and looked much better and we played more like ourselves. Amber Kohler really did a great job,” Martindale said.
They ended up winning in straight games again with scores of 30-25, 30-13 and 30-24. Several women stepped up in this game, with Kohler leading the team with 11 kills, three blocks and a .487 hitting percentage. She did more than put up great numbers, she was the emotional leader getting her teammates jazzed and giving the lady Eagles that extra spark they have needed all year. Jennie Rudder had six kills and four blocks, Kindra Romney had three aces and 22 assists, and Niki Griffiths also had six kills and two blocks.
“Everyone played and really contributed. We may not have been completely happy with the way we played all the time, but we are always happy to get the win,” Martindale said .
CEU’s volleyball team should end up taking fourth or fifth in the conference. An interesting fact for CEU is the lady Eagles play much better in the first game of a match in a losing effort compared to the other two. In the first game in a losing effort the women average about 21 points, in the second game they average 18 and in the third they average 17.