December 9, 2023

2-1 in SWAC conference


This archived article was written by: Brooke Anderson

The nationally ranked volleyball team went
2-1 in its first conference games of the season.
No. 19 ranked Utah State Eastern began conference
play against Colorado Northwestern
Community College on Sept. 23.
The gym was filled with fans for the home
opener and the team pulled off a 25-21 win in
the first set.
“The feeling [walking into the gym] was
awesome,” said freshman outside hitter Tessa
The Eagles struggled a bit in the second set
and Riffle said their struggle was caused by
mis-serves and lack of hit coverage, but what
eventually helped them pull out the 27-25 win
was the energy from the bench. “You need a
whole team to win, whether you’re on or off
the court.” Riffle said, who was a kill leader
with six kills.
The Eagles closed the match with a 25-20
win in the third and ended the game with a 1-0
conference record.
The next week, the team headed to Las Vegas,
having moved up in rankings to no. 18, for
their second conference match against College
of Southern Nevada on Sept. 28.
The Eagles beat the Coyotes in the first set
25-21, but dropped the next two sets, each 25-
23. The team’s errors increased in these sets
and the Coyotes began to put up a tough block.
In the fourth set, the team limited their
errors and fought for a solid 25-20 win and an
impressive 15-9 win in the fifth set.
Sidney Springer led the team, with a teamhigh
of 27 kills and Sarah Mafi trailed close
behind with 15 kills. Agatha Roese-Olsen led
the team with a team-high 58 assists.
Leaving Vegas with a 2-0 conference record
and a 14-3 record overall, the Eagles headed to
Ephraim for their next game on Sept. 30.
The Eagles were alone on top of the SWAC as
they went into their third match with confidence
against the Badgers.
The team fell to the Badgers by suffering a
devastating 25-9 loss in the first set. Coach Danielle
Jensen believes this was caused by nerves
and a new line-up to assist with some injuries.
They fought back in the second set, but
ultimately fell short with a loss of 25-23.
Denying a sweep, the Eagles defeated the
Badgers in the third set 25-23, but lost in the
fourth 27-25.
Sidney Springer and Sarah Mafi both led
the team each with 15 kills. Springer also led
in digs with 15. Jaelyn Olsen led with a nine
blocks in the match, trailed by Hailee Frey with
six blocks and Sidney Springer with five blocks.
The Eagles will host No. 12 Salt Lake Community
College, and No. 2 College of Southern
Idaho, this weekend. The games are Friday,
Oct. 6, at 7 p.m. and Saturday, Oct. 7, at 3 p.m.
in the BDAC.
Follow the team on Facebook and online at
Utah State Eastern