UCCS' Vailiant Comeback Falls Short

By Christopher Spomer published October 9, 2010

COLORADO SPRINGS- After a 2-0 set lead, it took Metro State everything they had to hold off the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs, winning in five (21-25, 19-25, 25-23, 26-24, 14-16) sets. Despite several impressive performances by the Mountain Lions (10-8, 4-5 Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference), the relentless attack and defensive play of the Roadrunners (13-5, 8-2 RMAC) outlasted the valiant comeback attempt of UCCS.

Alex Nuttall led the Mountain Lions offensively with 12 kills while a strong performance by Molly Crockett (10 kills and a .381 hitting percentage) was a close second. Nicole Pederson contributed nine kills of her own and Sonja Johnson and Nikki Kinzer each had eight on the evening. Kinzer and Pederson were also a part of four and three blocks respectively on a night where the Mountain Lions managed eight blocks after last night's dismal three.

UCCS found themselves up quickly in set one as they jumped out to an early 5-0 lead. The resiliency of Metro State showed up early however, as they chipped away to an 18 all tie.  The Roadrunners would eventually prevail 25-21.

The second set was point for point from the get go as it consisted of 10 ties and five lead changes. The Mountain Lions managed to get up 18-16 when a timeout by Metro State sent the Roadrunners on a 6-0 run that later turned into a 9-1 run to finish off the set.

The two teams tied an even more impressive 19 times in a thrilling third set. Despite being out hit .303-.229 by the Roadrunners in the set, the Mountain Lions capitalized on 10 Roadrunners errors to force game four. Nuttall and Crockett had their best performance in the crucial win or go home set as they each had four kills the 25-23 win.

"I think our loss to Regis made us realize that we need to step it up." said Nicole Pederson, "We weren't willing to give it up in three; we had no other choice."

The Mountain Lions once again jumped out to an early 5-0 lead in set four. However, this time UCCS didn't relinquish the lead until Metro State caught up at 24-24. A quick kill by Pederson put UCCS up one and Kinzer came in for her on a libero switch. On the way off the court Pederson was seen telling Kinzer to "Finish this set.", and that is exactly what the sophomore did as she got the next kill, sending the match to a deciding game five.

On the comment to Kinzer, Pederson contributed "We said at the beginning of the match that middles have to destroy Metro. We said we would encourage each other going in and out and to pump each other up."

Metro State had a 4-1 advantage in game five when a 6-1 run by the Mountain Lions put UCCS out front 7-5. The two teams battled to a 14 all tie and then Metro State's Bri Morley had two successive kills, ending the Mountain Lion's comeback bid.

Kendall Utz and Cindy Bathelt led the way defensively for UCCS as they had 17 and 13 digs respectively. Bathelt also contributed 44 of the Mountain Lion's 47 assists.

Metro State's resiliency to hold off UCCS also shows up in the statistics.  The Roadrunners had five players in double digit kills (Bri Morley 24, Emily Greenhalgh 14, Julie Causseaux 13, Anna Mapes 13, Lisa Jones 12). Metro State was just as impressive defensively as they had a combined 92 digs with Darcy Schwartzman leading the way with 22. Schwartzman was also the integral component of the scoring attack as she had 61 assists.

 "They had an amazing game. We were hitting so well and they kept digging our kills and kept the play going." said Pederson on the play of Metro State, "They had a very on game."

 
Alex Nuttall led the Mountain Lions offensively with 12 kills while a strong performance by Molly Crockett (10 kills and a .381 hitting percentage) was a close second. Nicole Pederson contributed nine kills of her own and Sonja Johnson and Nikki Kinzer each had eight on the evening. Kinzer and Pederson were also a part of four and three blocks respectively on a night where the Mountain Lions managed eight blocks after last night's dismal three.

UCCS found themselves up quickly in set one as they jumped out to an early 5-0 lead. The resiliency of Metro State showed up early however, as they chipped away to an 18 all tie.  The Roadrunners would eventually prevail 25-21.

The second set was point for point from the get go as it consisted of 10 ties and five lead changes. The Mountain Lions managed to get up 18-16 when a timeout by Metro State sent the Roadrunners on a 6-0 run that later turned into a 9-1 run to finish off the set.

The two teams tied an even more impressive 19 times in a thrilling third set. Despite being out hit .303-.229 by the Roadrunners in the set, the Mountain Lions capitalized on 10 Roadrunners errors to force game four. Nuttall and Crockett had their best performance in the crucial win or go home set as they each had four kills the 25-23 win.

"I think our loss to Regis made us realize that we need to step it up." said Nicole Pederson, "We weren't willing to give it up in three; we had no other choice."

The Mountain Lions once again jumped out to an early 5-0 lead in set four. However, this time UCCS didn't relinquish the lead until Metro State caught up at 24-24. A quick kill by Pederson put UCCS up one and Kinzer came in for her on a libero switch. On the way off the court Pederson was seen telling Kinzer to "Finish this set.", and that is exactly what the sophomore did as she got the next kill, sending the match to a deciding game five.

On the comment to Kinzer, Pederson contributed "We said at the beginning of the match that middles have to destroy Metro. We said we would encourage each other going in and out and to pump each other up."

Metro State had a 4-1 advantage in game five when a 6-1 run by the Mountain Lions put UCCS out front 7-5. The two teams battled to a 14 all tie and then Metro State's Bri Morley had two successive kills, ending the Mountain Lion's comeback bid.

Kendall Utz and Cindy Bathelt led the way defensively for UCCS as they had 17 and 13 digs respectively. Bathelt also contributed 44 of the Mountain Lion's 47 assists.

Metro State's resiliency to hold off UCCS also shows up in the statistics.  The Roadrunners had five players in double digit kills (Bri Morley 24, Emily Greenhalgh 14, Julie Causseaux 13, Anna Mapes 13, Lisa Jones 12). Metro State was just as impressive defensively as they had a combined 92 digs with Darcy Schwartzman leading the way with 22. Schwartzman was also the integral component of the scoring attack as she had 61 assists.

 "They had an amazing game. We were hitting so well and they kept digging our kills and kept the play going." said Pederson on the play of Metro State, "They had a very on game."

 

UCCS Players/Staff Featured

Nicole PedersonNicole Pederson15MB
Nicole PedersonNicole Pederson15MB
Cindy BatheltCindy Bathelt16S
Cindy BatheltCindy Bathelt16S
Cindy BatheltCindy Bathelt16S
Alex WoodAlex Wood13RSSr
Alex WoodAlex Wood13RSJr
Alex WoodAlex Wood13RSSo
Alex WoodAlex Wood13RSFr
Kendall UtzKendall Utz8L
Kendall UtzKendall Utz8L
Nikki KinzerNikki Kinzer2MBSr
Nikki KinzerNikki Kinzer2MB
Nikki KinzerNikki Kinzer2MB
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