Ladies remain confident after loss

the volleyball team celebrates a point earned during their first match of the Sept. 22 home game against Washburn University.

the volleyball team celebrates a point earned during their first match of the Sept. 22 home game against Washburn University.

David Haut

Tense fans and tight defense kept the Lions volleyball match close Sept. 22 against Washburn University.

Seniors Jackie Gallagher and Sara Jaynes led the Lions with 14 kills each. Sophomore Ashley Mehrer and freshman Sarah Hoffmeister followed with 12 and six respectively.

“I thought our team played great,” Gallagher said. “Toward the end we made errors that cost us every single game.”

The Lions were neck and neck with WU every game. Neither team led any game by more than four points. The Lions lost each game by only two points.

“I’m very happy with the way we played,” said head coach Chris Willis. “We played the 19th-ranked team in the country, and all three games we put ourselves in a position to win. That’s what I ask from my team, ‘put ourselves in a position to win.'”

The loss puts the Lions 5-7 overall and 1-1 in MIAA conference play. Nationally-ranked WU moved to 14-2.

“I think that tonight was a night we showed another team in the MIAA that we’re a very good team,” Gallagher said. “We’re not upset. Even though we lost we have a lot of confidence. Going into Emporia and Central we are going to give them a run for their money.”

Willis said his strategy is to keep things the same.

“We have to play at this level every game,” he said. “We need to learn how to finish games. The mark of a good team is one that will go through the growing pains of learning how to win tight games. Right now we’re struggling with that.”

Students and faculty were on hand to support the Lions the Homecoming week game. The Campus Activities Board passed out free T-shirts and soft drinks during the game as well.

The Lions will travel to Emporia State University on Friday and Warrensburg on Saturday to face Central Missouri State University.

Their schedule will continue through October into November. The MIAA tournament will take place on Nov. 9-13.

Their next home match will be against Truman State University at 7 p.m. in the Young Gym.