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Western volleball takes two at EIU Invitational

Shiah+Sanders+jumps+up+to+score+for+the+Leahternecks+in+a+home+match.+
Shiah Sanders jumps up to score for the Leahternecks in a home match.

Shiah Sanders jumps up to score for the Leahternecks in a home match.

File Photo

File Photo

Shiah Sanders jumps up to score for the Leahternecks in a home match.

Brie Coder, Courier Staff

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Western Illinois University’s women’s volleyball had a successful weekend at Charleston, Ill. at the Eastern Illinois University (EIU) Panther Invitation.  Western  turned their play around from last weekend and went 2-1 for the tournament.

Western began the EIU invitation with a loss to Chicago State University, 1-3. In the first set, the Leathernecks led the match earlier on, but fell to the Cougars 25-18. 

The Purple and Gold jumped to a quick lead in the second set with senior outside hitter Shalyn Greenhaw and junior outside hitter Shiah Sanders’ kills. Later in the same set, due to attack errors and kills by freshman outside hitter Emma Norris and sophomore right side hitter Aleezah Washington, the Leathernecks were up 30-29. Chicago State was able to capture the next three points, and win the set 32-30.

Western was able to secure a win in the third set, 26-24. The fourth set was hard for the Leathernecks to pick up traction in. The Cougars won the set 25-15, and the overall game.

During the first match against Chicago State, Western junior setter Jamie Johnson recorded 32 assists. Greenhaw also recorded a double-double, with 11 kills and 22 digs. Junior middle hitter Emilee Dechant logged 11 block assists to go along with a solo block.

On Saturday morning, during match two against Alabama A&M University, the Leathernecks came back strong. The Purple and Gold won the match 3-0, which began their winning streak for day two.

In set one, Greenhaw led with a team-high record of 15 kills and 13 digs. Along with two attacking errors on Alabama A&M, Western kept the battle going eventually pulling ahead. Norris ended the set with a kill, and a win 25-22.

Norris and red-shirt freshman middle hitter Mackenzie Steckler helped the team continue the lead with kills, beginning of the second set. With the Leathernecks up 23-18, Alabama A&M was right behind and put together four points. This wasn’t enough, as Western won the set 25-23.

In the third set, the same results followed as it did in the second set. The difference was this set had more back and forth battle, as both teams tried to create as many points as possible. A kill from Steckler and Johnson earlier in the set halted an Alabama A&M five-point run. The Leathernecks were down 19-15, but were able to pick back up and win the set 25-23, and the game 3-0.

In game two, sophomore libero Claire Grove led with 14 digs. Dechant recorded four block assists and junior outside hitter Melanie Patenaude tacked on two service aces.

Later Saturday evening, Western played its final match in the EIU Invite against the hosts, Eastern Illinois University.

In set one, the Panthers were in the lead by one point 9-8. The Leathernecks won the next five out of six points, due to an attacking error by the Panthers, and a Norris ace and kill. The Purple and Gold continued winning the next six out of seven points, and the set 25-15.

The second set consisted of runs from both teams. The Leathernecks and Panthers each had four point runs early in the set. With Western down 13-10, they came back to put together eight of nine points. They led 17-14. Eastern came back to tie the set, but two errors gave Western the advantage, along with a Steckler kill, to win the set 25-23.

The Leathernecks kept the energy going during the third set, and commanded the board 13-3. Eastern Illinois was close to catch up, but couldn’t in time. This led to a set and game win for Western 3-0.

The third game highlighted Dechant with another four block assists to her weekend total. Next was Johnson adding 37 assists, and Summit League leader Grove posting another 15 digs.

Currently Western’s volleyball record is 5-5. On Sept. 12th, the Leathernecks will be returning to Western Hall to face Saint Louis University. The first 100 fans to enter will receive milkshakes and post-match autographs from the team.

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The independent student newspaper of Western Illinois University. Serving Macomb since 1905.
Western volleball takes two at EIU Invitational