The Montana State Bobcats began their conference play with games on Sept. 21 at the University of Idaho, and traveled to Cheney, Washington to take on the Eagles of Eastern Washington on Sept. 23. After hard-fought games, the Bobcats were unsuccessful in collecting a win in either contest.
The Bobcats opened up their conference play on Sept. 21 with a trip to Moscow, Idaho for a match against the University of Idaho Vandals. The Bobcats looked to leave Moscow with their first conference victory but were turned away by the Vandals losing in three straight sets; 25-19, 25-14 and 25-12.
Sophomore outside hitter Savannah Laws led the Bobcats with eight kills while senior setter Katie Rutecki tallied 16 assists. Sophomore libero Allyssa Rizzo led the Bobcats on the defensive side of the net shoveling out 10 digs. Freshman outside hitter Libby Christensen helped out on defense with seven digs accounted for. Kaela Straw led Idaho with 12 kills while Haylee Mathis topped the assist chart with 28.
On Sept. 23, the Bobcats journeyed to Cheney, Washington for a match against Eastern Washington University. With their first conference win on the line, the Bobcats aimed to pluck it from the Eagles’ grasp. However, the Bobcats fell short, losing in five sets.
The Eagles grabbed the first set 25-20 but the Bobcats responded with strong outings in the next two sets, winning both 25-18 and 25-21 respectively. With the match victory within a set, the Bobcats looked to seal the win but were turned away with the Eagles taking the fourth set 26-24. With the sets tied at two, the Bobcats fought hard to come away with the victory but in the end fell just short losing 16-14.
Freshman outside hitter Hannah Scott tallied the most kills on the match coming away with 16. Rutecki exemplified her impressive setting abilities by totalling 46 assists in the five-set match. Rizzo also kept up her defensive prowess, racking up 22 digs on the night to lead the team. Kahle Elliot led the Eagles with 13 kills while Regan Harr collected 32 assists to lead the team. Ashley Seller tallied 18 digs to top the Eagles in that category.
The Bobcats look to tally their first win in conference play on Sept. 28 as they welcome the Vikings of Portland State to Shroyer Gym. The University of Montana Grizzlies come to town on Sept. 30 for a Brawl of the Wild match-up as the Bobcats look to end homecoming week on a high note.