Warriors Clinch Playoff Berth

Photo Courtesy/ ESU Warriors Athletics

Ronald Hanaki

Staff Writer

ESU Women’s Volleyball clinched a berth in the PSAC Postseason Tournament by beating the Lock Haven University Bald Eagles in four sets at Koehler Fieldhouse last Saturday. The set scores were 25-16, 25-13, 19-25 and 25-10.

It was the ninth consecutive victory for the Warriors and their 21st overall this season.

The win also ended a 26-game losing streak to Lock Haven dating back to 2002. 

Their team defense has been its calling card this season. The Warriors have the best opposition attack percentage in the PSAC. Opponents are averaging a paltry 0.085 attack percentage against the stalwart Warriors.

ESU is also ranked first in the conference with 2.49 blocks per set average.

Senior Jasmine Williams and redshirt junior Trea-sure Ketter led the block party with six blocks and four blocks respectively.

Sophomore Emily Meredith contributed 12 digs to anchor the Warrior defense.

Offensively, senior Sam Dunphy’s eleven kills and senior Sarah Smith’s ten kills paced the Warriors.

Freshman Rachel Cain had a team-high 27 assists.

Cain is also among the conference leaders with a 9.37 assists per set average and a 4.78 digs per set average.

ESU won the first two sets pretty handily and looked to sweep Lock Haven in three sets.

Lock Haven would flip the script in the next set and the Bald Eagles raced out to an early 5-1 lead before the Warriors rallied to make the set competitive. Nevertheless, Lock Haven held off ESU to win the third set 25-19.

ESU closed out Lock Haven 25-10 in the fourth set to win the match.

After the game, Ketter talked about how proud she was of her team.

“I am so proud of us that we pushed through. We beat Lock Haven and made history during my senior year,” Ketter said. 

She is having an outstanding season. She is ranked first in the conference with 1.40 blocks per set.

Dunphy is one of the co-captains of the team.

“Lock Haven is in our pod [the PSAC Central Division], so we really wanted to beat them to keep the top spot in the PSAC,” Dunphy said.

Head coach Kevin Rodgers gave credit to his team’s defense for the win.

“We stuck to the game plan. Our defense was really good,” Rodgers said. “We held them to a negative hitting percentage, which means they had more errors than positive kills. We have one of the best defenses in the conference.” 

The victorious Warriors (21-4, 11-1) will travel to historic Shepherdstown, W.Va. to play Shepherd University (22-2, 10-2) tomorrow evening.

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