WHITTIER, Calif. – The Susquehanna women’s volleyball team was poised to force a fourth set against Whittier after dropping the first two sets but the Poets rallied to take a 35-33 third-set decision and win the match 3-0.
SU (20-7) fell 25-14, 25-19, 35-33 to Whittier (13-8) to end its three-match West Coast trip.
Morgan Whiteman (Camp Hill, Pa./Trinity) led the team in kills with nine while Erin Byrne (San Diego, Calif./Scripps Ranch) had seven. Maggie O’Hearn (Mountville, Pa./Hempfield) added a team-high 23 assists to go along with 10 digs for a double-double while Sarah Paluck (Nesquehoning, Pa./Tamaqua Area) finished with 27 digs. Nine players had at least one assisted block as SU tallied 14 assisted blocks in the match.
In the opening set, SU held an early 3-1 lead but Whittier strung together five-straight points to take a 6-3 advantage. A Paluck service ace tied the match at seven and an attack error by the Poets gave the Crusaders a 10-9 lead. Unfortunately that marked the team’s final lead of the set as Whittier went on to the 25-14 win.
Susquehanna jumped out to a 5-1 lead in set two and still led by three (14-11) midway through the action. The Crusaders went on to build that lead to five (18-13) but Whittier went on a 12-1 run to come from behind for the win.
The third set was a marathon, taking a combined 68 points to determine the winner. The Crusaders opened up with a 7-2 lead and led by eight (15-7) on a Whiteman kill. SU was poised to take the third set, leading 23-16 late in the action. However, the Poets rallied to tie it at 24 and from there, the teams traded points. A Whittier service error made it a 33-33 score but the Poets were able to go ahead 34-33 on an Alessandra Rios kill and won the set and the match after a Byrne attack error.
Susquehanna returns to action next weekend for the second Landmark Conference Round Robin Tournament of the season. USMMA is the tentative host of that weekend’s tournament pending the end of the government shut down.
Volleyball Closes Out West Coast Trip with Loss at Whittier