Independent Student Newspaper of UW Oshkosh Campuses

The Advance-Titan

Independent Student Newspaper of UW Oshkosh Campuses

The Advance-Titan

Independent Student Newspaper of UW Oshkosh Campuses

The Advance-Titan

Volleyball gets swept by Blugolds

The UW Oshkosh women’s volleyball team was swept by UW-Eau Claire on Saturday as the Titans lost in set scores of 16-25, 20-25 and 23-25.

Oshkosh was led in kills by junior Kristina Elstner with 12, followed by junior Brianna Witter with seven and freshman Shelby Coron with six. Leading the team in digs was sophomore Rachel Gardner with 14, and sophomore Samantha Jaeke led the team in assists with 24.

Despite falling in the first two sets, the Titans were able to come back in the third set to take a 23-20 advantage. However, it was not enough to give the Titans the momentum they needed to pull out a victory.

Head coach Jon Ellmann said the team kept improving throughout the match, despite the outcome.

“The improvement we showed throughout the course of the match was positive,” Ellmann said. “We continuously worked to improve the quality of play and energy on our side of the net. We did to the extent that we earned a 23-20 advantage in the third set. On the flip side, we were unable to execute at a high enough rate to close out the third set.”

This is the team’s seventh loss in a row this season. Jaeke says the team’s confidence and season outlook remain positive, and the losses only drive the team forward.

“The team’s overall outlook and confidence hasn’t became negative at all,” Jaeke said. “We have more drive to play better and work hard in the practice gym every day to improve.”

Despite a seven-game losing streak, the Titans do have some positives to look back on thus far in the season. Gardner said how the team has handled difficult opponents so far and how much the team chemistry has improved as the season has gone on are definite bright spots.

“Some positives I think would be our super tough schedule,” Gardner said. “It’s awesome to compete against teams that won the national tournament last year and teams that were in the final four. Playing with these teams shows that we are just as good. Another positive would be we have grown together as a team on and off the court.”

Along the same lines as Gardner, Ellmann said the team’s record might not necessarily reflect its effort, but trust and resilience are the top areas the team excels in.

“There are too many positives to list here, but if I had to pick two they would be trust and resilience,” Ellmann said. “We have learned what true hard work and mental toughness look like. Regardless of result, our girls step in the gym every day and work hard on not only their volleyball-specific skills but also their character. That ability and willingness to put in work has helped build a solid foundation of trust. Those things alone are hard to come by and we are blessed to see them every day in our gym.”

The next step in the season for the Titans is the UW Oshkosh Classic on Friday, Oct. 6 and Saturday, Oct. 7. Jaeke said the team is excited to get back on the home court after a week of practice.

“We are excited to play on our home court against some great competition,” Jaeke said. “But first we are excited to get into the practice gym to keep on improving every day.”

On the list for the team this weekend are North Park University and University of St. Thomas on Friday and Simpson College and St. Olaf College on Saturday.

After this weekend’s matches, the team will travel to UW-Stevens Point to face the fourth-best team in the Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference standings. The Pointers currently have two victories against one loss in the conference, contributing to an 18-6 overall record on the season.

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