Over the weekend the Fort Hays State University volleyball team (7-11, 2-8 Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletic Association) had two losses in a row to the Missouri Western State University Griffons (14-4, 8-2 MIAA) and the Northwest Missouri State Bearcats (9-9, 6-4 MIAA).
Friday’s game against MWSU started off close for the Tigers until Mallory Flagor, Hoisington junior, delivered two consecutive kills. The Tigers began a massive attack that included two kills each from Rebekah Spainhour, Derby sophomore, and Haley Corkill, Kansas City, MO. sophomore, which eventually put the Tigers up 19-13.
The Tigers won the set 25-20 on a service error by MWSU.
The second began with the Tigers falling behind with a score of 9-5. The set came down to a tie 25-25, which was settled by two kills from MWSU’s Jessie Thorup. The set’s final score was 25-27.
The Tigers kept the set in reach until a block error by Taylor Mares, Fort Collins, CO., senior, began a Griffon offensive that put them up 17-11. The Tigers were unable to come back from the gain and lost the set 25-18.
FHSU’s fourth set had a close score until a kill by MWSU’s Erica Rottinghaus began a series that led to a 25-15 victory.
The Griffons had an overall win of 4-1.
“At times we really played well, but we didn’t put together a full night and you’re going to get beat any time you do that,” said Kurt Kohler, head coach. “We needed to bring more energy and focus on the intangible parts of the game. Our passing really struggled in the fourth set.”
Flagor and Callie Christensen, Raymond, NE. freshman, led the Tigers offensively with 12 kills each.
Kristin Conor, Highlands Ranch, CO. sophomore, led the team in assists with a total of 25, and Keanu Bradley, Rose Hill, KS, sophomore, led the team in digs with a total of 18.
FHSU tried to bounce back on Saturday against NMS.
The Tigers led the majority of the first set, building a 17-11 lead, but several errors resulted in the Bearcats winning the set on a kill by Bristol Lewis.
During the second set, neither team was able to build a significant lead. However, the Bearcats pulled ahead at the end, winning the set 25-22.
The Tigers were unable to get a foothold against the Bearcats. They lost 25-15 in the second game and left the set 3-0.
“We offensively didn’t do our job today,” Kohler said. “They took advantage of things we didn’t do well and took that first game, and I think it kind of deflated us going in to that third set. I think the effort was there we just didn’t execute properly.”
Christensen led the team again in kills with 11 against NMS. Conor again led the team in assists with 22 total and Bradley also led the team again in digs with 17 total.
The Tigers next opponent is the Emporia State Hornets on Oct. 14 at 6 p.m. in the Gross Memorial Coliseum.