Volleyball ends season with close losses on the road

The volleyball team’s season ended on the road with games against Weber State University and the University of Montana. Although the Cats played well, they lost both games in a close competition.

On Thursday, Nov. 12 the Bobcats traveled to Ogden, Utah to take on the Wildcats of Weber State. Although the Bobcats fought hard, the Wildcats won the game three sets to none. The score was tied 12 times throughout the first set. With the score at 26 apiece the Wildcats scored two unanswered to take a 28-26 win in the first set. The second set was just as hard-fought as the first. Weber State took the first lead of the set, and extended it to take a 12-6 lead. Montana State answered back, and a 8-1 run gave the Bobcats a 14-13 lead. Weber State would not be denied however, and with the Bobcats leading 19-18, the Wildcats finished off the set with a 7-1 run to close out the set with the score of 25-20. Weber jumped out to an early 9-3 lead in the third set before MSU battled back and eventually took the lead with the score at 20-19. The Wildcats closed out the third set with a 6-1 run however, and won the third set 25-21.

“It was a back-and-forth battle and we had chances to win but couldn’t close it out,” MSU Head Coach J.J. Riley said. “Weber did a great job blocking and their outside hitters had a great night which helped propel them to victory.” Freshman Natalie Passeck led the Cats in kills with 10, while sophomore Kiana Black added seven kills and three blocks. Defensively, sophomore Kasey Altman led the Cats in digs with 11, and senior Natalee Godfrey led in blocks with five.

The Bobcats took on the University of Montana on Saturday, Nov. 14 in Missoula. The Grizzlies avenged their loss to the Bobcats earlier in the season and defeated MSU 3-0. In the first set, UM took an early 9-6 lead before the Cats scored five unanswered points to take a 11-9 lead. The lead changed five more times in the set before the Griz ended the set with four unanswered points and took set one 25-21. Strong offense by UM started off the second set, and leading 16-14, the Griz scored five unanswered to take a 21-14 lead. The Bobcats scored only three more times before the Griz closed out the set with the score of 25-17. Montana used the momentum of the second set to cruise to a 25-18 win in the third set. Passeck led the Cats in kills with nine, and Altman led in digs with 12. Senior Katie Harrington recorded her third double-double of the season with 26 assists and 11 digs.

The Bobcats finished with a 3-21 overall record, 1-15 in the Big Sky Conference. “This

off-season is going to be pivotal for our program’s growth as we have learned a lot and have a very clear vision of what needs to change in order to bring this program into contention in the Big Sky,” Riley said. “We are excited to see a lot of good things happening in the future but everyone involved needs to make the full commitment to do everything we can to better ourselves as well as this program.