Volleyball goes 2-2 over week

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Neal Hogden

UWO women’s volleyball attacks the net during Wednesday’s match.

Christine Bjornstal, Sports Writer

The UW Oshkosh women’s volleyball season is quickly coming to a close. On Wednesday, Oct. 23, the Titans took on fellow Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference opponent UW-Platteville in the Kolf Sports Center, winning 3-0 on senior night.

UWO controlled the matches throughout the night. The Titans took the first set 25-18, dominated second set winning 25-15 and routed the Pioneers in third 25-17.

Titan middle blocker Taylor Allen ended the night with five blocks and five kills. UWO defensive specialist Katie Hodges had a match high 14 digs.

Head coach Jon Ellmann struggled to find words to explain what this group of seniors meant to him.

“It’s really hard to sum up what seniors mean to you in a couple sentences,” Ellmann said. “We look at our seniors as a group of girls who have been here for four different coaching staffs. One of the most important things is that they were open to change, they bought in and their work ethic never wavered from freshman to senior year.”

UWO outside hitter Samantha Jaeke said she was glad to send the seniors out the right way with a win.

“I honestly tried to play the best I can to make sure they didn’t go down with a loss,” Jaeke said. “I was very close with all the seniors, so it was a hard night to realize they are leaving us. I’m really happy they had a great game.”

Senior Tina Elstner said the team faced adversity early in Wednesday’s match but were able to pull it together.

“I think we struggled a little bit in the beginning, but a win’s a win, and we figured it out at the end,” Elstner said.

Over the weekend the Titans traveled to Mequon for the Concordia University Wisconsin Invitational. On Friday, the team took on the host team CUW and swept the match winning three sets to zero.

The Titans were able to snap CUW’s 13-match home-winning streak due in part to Elstner who had a match-best of 11 kills in the match off 28 total attacks. UWO out-blocked the Falcons with 14 total team blocks compared to CUW’s four total. The Titans won the match 25-21, 25-17, 25-23.

The second day of the tournament consisted of the Titans facing off with the No. 15 nationally ranked Illinois Wesleyan University and Cardinal Stritch University.

In the morning, UWO took on Illinois Wesleyan, and the Titans couldn’t find a way to get past another nationally ranked opponent. Illinois Wesleyan had several players hitting above .333, and although the Titans had seven total team blocks, they couldn’t stop the hitters. The team was swept in three with scores of 16-25, 20-25, 21-25.

UWO was able to rebound and focus in on their next opponent Cardinal Stritch University after the morning loss. Each of the sets were played to close scores within two or three points.

The Titans were able to pull the sweep to win its fourth 3-0 win in five matches. UWO hit .261 overall in the match. Elstner had eight kills off 21 attacks, while hitting .238, while Jaeke had seven kills off 13 attacks and hit .462. UWO won the match 25-22, 25-22, 25-23.

The Titans have one final regular season match before the WIAC Championship, with the first round beginning on Oct. 30.