Volleyball upsets No. 2 UW-La Crosse

The UW Oshkosh women’s volleyball team lost in five sets against UW-Stout on Saturday but ousted UW-La Crosse in four sets on Tuesday night in the first round of the Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference tournament.

However, in the first round of the WIAC tournament on Tuesday, the Titans defeated UW La Crosse in set scores of 20-25, 25-15, 25-13 and 25-19. Despite losing the first set of the night, the Titans rallied and secured the final three sets of the match as they collected the first round victory.

UWO senior Renee Rush led the Titans in kills, racking up 13, while freshman Emma Kiekhofer totaled 20 assists on the night. Senior Rachel Gardner led both teams in digs, collecting an astonishing 30 and propelled the Titans to victory.

As the Titans advance in the WIAC tournament, head coach Jon Ellmann said that in order to continue their success, the team needs to stay focused on what they’ve set out to accomplish.

“We need to believe in our own strengths and trust each other,” Ellmann said. “We need to respond to adversity in a positive way, and we need to be relentless in the pursuit of our goal.”

However, Ellmann said he knows the task to keep winning won’t be easy. In fact, Ellmann said he believes it will only get harder from here on out.

“In our conference you can’t ever let off the gas, you can’t coast,” Ellmann stated. “Simply put, that last match [against UW-Stout] is fuel for the rest of the way.”

In Saturday’s game, UW-Stout rallied late, scoring the last five points in set five and defeated the Titans for the first time since Oct. 11, 2014. The Titans defeated the Blue Devils in sets 2 and 4 before falling short of victory in the final set.

The Titans will go on the road to take on UW-Whitewater in the semifinal round of the WIAC tournament on Nov. 1 at 7 p.m.