Women’s volleyball tricked on Halloween night

Photo: Katie Smolen
Sophomore Latoya Hutchinson (above right) attempts an attack in Friday’s match against California (Pa.) where the Scots fell 3-1.
Boro earns set one win

By Charles Ivey
Staff Writer/Spectator

On Halloween night inside McComb Fieldhouse, the crowd at the California (Pa.), Edinboro women’s volleyball match was showered with candy during pre-game introductions.

However, the real treat went to the Vulcans. With the PSAC Western Division playoff picture unbearably tight, both teams came to the match Friday night with a must-win attitude.

Unfortunately, the Scots dropped the four-set match, losing 3-1 (28-26, 25-9, 25-21, 25-21) against the Vulcans, giving the ladies of Cal. U a season sweep in the process.

The first set hinted at an early sweep for the match, but in the other direction, as the Lady Scots took the first point of the set. As the set went on, Cal U. (22-8, 14-5 PSAC) provided the Scots with a fight as both teams took turns trailing by no more than three points. The Scots soon pulled ahead by capitalizing off the Vulcans’ many errors.

“We served them off the court in the first set. That was the difference,” head coach Missy Soboleski said. “It wasn’t like we were scoring a bunch on our own we just keep them out of system and so we were getting a lot of free balls and then able to score. I should say we did score on our own, but we kept them out of system and they made a lot of errors.”

Set two was the turning point in the match, as  that marked the start of California’s three set win streak. They went on to score the first point and kept their assault going as the Scots lost the set by 16 points. The nine points that the Scots scored in the second set is the lowest they have ever scored in a set this season, as the previous was 13 points.

Soboleski remarked about her team’s second set performance.

“It was Jekyll and Hyde. One team was out there and then all of a sudden we went back out there and we couldn’t pass and we were making too many errors, too many hitting errors, too many serving errors, couple of ball control things, passing too tight, you name it, we didn’t do it well.”

The third set was one where the Scots trailed early on until a comeback later on in the set. However, the Vulcans sealed the 25-21 set victory after a serving error by the Scots.

The fourth set ended the match with an identical score to the third. California took the first point and took a lead as big as six, but the Scots threatened to take the lead closing to within one point multiple times. 

“If we can keep them out of system, then yes we’re okay, but what happens when we don’t keep them out of system and that’s obviously what happened [and] we couldn’t control them and that was the biggest issue there. We were not able to make transitions and get kills when they were serving,” said Soboleski.

The loss severely damaged Edinboro’s PSAC playoff hopes, however, the Scots are ranked seventh in the initial NCAA Atlantic Regional rankings.

The top six ranked teams in the final rankings, who are not conference champions, qualify for the NCAA tournament.

The ladies wrap up the 2014 regular season on the road with a match at Indiana (Pa.) on Friday and one against Clarion on Saturday.

Charles Ivey is staff writer for The Spectator. He can be reached by sports.sepctator@gmail.com