UCCS completes crossover sweep

By Doug Fitzgerald published October 7, 2006

KEARNEY, Neb. â€" The Mountain Lions came into the second Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference east/West Crossover Tournament knowing it was a make-or-break weekend for them.

You can mark it down as an emphatic “make.”

“This was a huge weekend for us,” said University of Colorado at Colorado Springs middle blocker Caroline Ottino. “Everyone had been beating everyone in the RMAC and we finally just took care of our business this weekend.

“We got our job done.”

Ottino was instrumental in getting the job done. The senior had 10 kills as UCCS defeated the Western State Mountaineers 3-0 (30-15, 30-21, 30-27) Saturday afternoon at the Health and Sports Center to complete a three-match sweep for the tournament.

The Mountain Lions' third match of the weekend, and second Saturday, was their best. UCCS outhit Western State .270 to .143. The Mountaineersâ€TM vaunted blocking game was neutralized as they had just six and also committed three blocking errors.

“We just focused on our game â€" what was going on on our side of the net â€" and it paid off for us,” said Ottino.

With the win, the Mountain Lions improved to 11-10, 8-5 in the RMAC. UCCS also moved into seventh in the conference and now owns a tiebreaker advantage over Western State, Colorado State-Pueblo and Colorado Mines, the three teams narrowly trailing the Mountain Lions in the standings. Eight teams qualify for the RMAC playoffs.

It was also the Mountain Lionsâ€TM seventh win in the past eight matches and their season-best fourth straight.

“Weâ€TMve started flowing better together,” said Ottino. “Everything has started really clicking.”

Tynet Calhoun led Western State (12-8, 7-5 RMAC) with eight kills.

UCCS past four matches have been four of the teamâ€TMs best five as far as hitting efficiency is concerned.

“We are starting to feel more confident,” said Ottino. “We know we can not only hang with teams, but weâ€TMre beating some (teams) that in the past weâ€TMve had trouble with.”

UCCS Players/Staff Featured

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