Wildcats Fall Short in 2013 Volleyball Season Opener
Aug 30, 2013
ROCHESTER, Mich.- The Villanova women's volleyball team fell short in its season opener Friday from the Athletics Center O'rena in Rochester, Mich. after Oregon State (1-0) defeated the Wildcats, 3-1 (22-25, 25-21, 21-25,17-25). Villanova (0-1) will seek its first win Saturday afternoon when it plays a double header versus Oakland (Noon) and Central Michigan (4:30 p.m.) as part of the Golden Grizzlies Invitational.
The loss snaps a three-match road winning streak to open the season for Villanova under head coach Josh Steinbach.
"Oregon State is a really tough team to open the season with but I feel like we have a lot to feel good about," Steinbach said.
Despite finishing with 53 kills, the Wildcats were inefficient at the point of attack with a .213 attack percentage to Oregon State's .273 and were out blocked, 15-8.
A positive note for the Wildcats has to be the solid play of the young guns. Sophomores Lauren Carpenter and Emma Pettit continued where they left off last season by leading the way with kills and assists respectively. Carpenter finished with a team-high 16 kills (.279 pct.), while Pettit had 48 assists and was second on the team with eight digs. Sophomore Gabby Pethokoukis was the team's most efficient attacker with a .350 pct. and nine kills.
Freshman Michaela Berendt got the start in the middle and played well. She registered her first block in the second set with assistance by Carpenter. The 6'4 Washington native led the way with four blocks and was efficient on the attacking end with seven kills on 10 attempts. Berendt wasn't the only freshman who impressed in the opener as Claire Crutchfield played in all four sets and was second on the team with 13 kills in the afternoon.
"We played really hard. Our young players played well and with confidence," Steinbach added.
Villanova scored the first point of the season but went back and forth the entire first set before dropping it, 25-22. The Wildcats would recover and bounce back to win the second set, 25-21. However, the defensive play for the Beavers was too much for Villanova to handle in the third and fourth stanzas as they finished with 69 digs.
All matches can be followed through gametracker by clicking on the link below.