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Lady Cougars extend Crossroads League streak

The MVNU volleyball team (23-3) picked up two wins last week, beating Grace College 3-0 (25-13, 25-17, 27-26) and Marian University 3-1 (25-17, 18-25, 25-17, 25-17).

Senior Annelise Rohrer recorded 16 kills against Grace College and junior Ashley Gingerich tallied 12 digs.

The victory improved the team’s Crossroads League record to 12-1.

“This was some great, competitive volleyball. Grace is a dangerous team to play,” Cougars coach Paul Swanson said.

The key to the Cougars’ 11th conference victory was wanting to score. “It’s all about being eager to get the next point, nothing else,” he said.

Another key to victory was anticipation, said Swanson.

“Our players anticipated really well. Ashley Gingerich serving was a big plus for us and her back row play made a big difference for us too.”

The Cougars’ 23rd win of the season came against Marian University on Saturday. Rohrer picked up 12 kills in the victory while Gingerich tallied 33 digs. Sophomore Kristen Osborn and junior Kelsey Bryte also reached double digits in the kills category with 11 and 10.

“It’s all about how our players respond, compete and play,” Swanson said. He added that it’s a matter of the team knowing that the only way to compete is with confidence and determination.

The Lady Cougars came out strong, easily defeating Marian in game one. Game two proved to be a challenge and MVNU fell 25-18. The Lady Cougars responded and won games three and four, 25-17.

“I think we did a good job of responding in the third set and picking up our consistency to finish points,” Osborn said. In the game, “Marian played really well and we had a lot of long rallies that might have ended in points for us if we had communicated better.”

The key to coming away with a win after the game two loss was consistency, Swanson agreed.

“It’s consistency of competitiveness and consistency in our back row. That’s what proved to be the difference,” Swanson said. “I was happy with hour our players responded after the game two loss.

The Cougars will face Huntington University on Tuesday.

Coach Swanson believes there’s no easy game in the Crossroads League.

“We always have to compete and work hard. We have to be ready for Huntington. Our players are looking forward to that challenge.”

Osborn and the Lady Cougars look to keep playing hard defensively.

“We’ll keep improving our defense and eliminating errors on offense so we’re ready to compete against Huntington,” she said.

The match at Huntington University will begin at 7 p.m. on Tuesday.

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