This archived article was written by: Katie Bigelow
Utah State University Eastern Lady Eagles finally have a chance to take on the tough competition of the Region 18 NJCAA Conference. They took on Colorado Northwestern Community College Sept. 24. This past weekend the Lady Eagles played Snow College on Sept. 30 and Salt Lake Community College on Oct. 1. The team did well coming out with a 2-1 win, but with a forfeit to CNCC, the team stats show 1-2.
Even though the team beat CNCC, the Eagles had to forfeit because of a NJCAA rule infraction. However, that did not reflect the strong and team play the women had. “We came out and played well. We won in three games,” said Coach Chelsey Warburton. The stats are not clear for the CNCC game because of the forfeit, but the team had won in three straight games. “We didn’t have any let downs,” commented Warburton.
The team had spent a long time in practice working on their focus. During the game the team’s practice proved worthy playing CNCC. “We had spent a lot of time practicing passing, and it was strong during the game,” she said.
A few injuries still plague the team. Warburton commented, “Samara Well has been out for three weeks with a foot injury, and she has finally been able to practice again. There are a few other girls with minor injuries that are painful, but they are playing through them.” Though the girls have injuries, they play hard and don’t let down.
Snow College came to town on Sept. 30. USU Eastern had won the first two sets against Snow with 25-18 and 25-21. “We played great,” said Warburton. The team had a minor let down, allowing Snow to win the third set 25-22. Despite that the Eagles came back hard and strong to win the fourth set and gain a victory 25-17. “Everything went well; we played hard and passed well. That’s what our team is capable of playing like always,” she said. During the third set, the team had let down just a little, but they were able to rise up and put the pressure back on Snow for a win.
Playing back to back games can be tough on a team. The USU Eastern lady Eagles had to play Salt Lake Community College Oct. 1. Salt Lake has a strong athletics program. They won the first two sets 25-19 and 25-10. The Lady Eagles were not willing to just give up. They put up a hard fight to win the third set 29-27.
“We were up on them in the third set. We either tied or led by a couple points,” she said. In the fourth set, the Lady Eagles were just always a step behind. SLCC won 25-16.
Warburton commented, “We struggled with passing and that makes it hard to run an offense. Compared to Friday’s game, we didn’t have the same intensity.” Unfortunately, one of the girls got sick Friday night. “We just seemed one step off on everything, like passing and blocking.” Over all the team averages 9.5 kills, 8.3 assists, and 1.3 aces a game along with 2.5 blocks with 12.7 digs per game.
The team prepares and is working hard in practice to take a long trip to College of Southern Idaho and North Idaho on Oct. 6-8. Warburton added, “We are going to be working on key things such as passing in preparation for CSI and NI.” The co-head coaches Chelsey Warburton and Grant Barraclough are prepping their team for the new challenges ahead.