Eagles fall in GLIAC championship game


Eagles fall in GLIAC championship game

Bree Gannon

The Ashland University Eagles volleyball team advanced to the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Tournament championship match on Saturday (Nov. 19) in a match against Lake Erie.

The No. 3-seeded Eagles beat the No. 7 seed Lake Erie 3-2 (23-25, 30-32,25-23, 25-19,15-12).

In the first set the Eagles were up 5-0 before Lake Erie tied the set up at 23 points each. The Storm then scored the next two points to take the first set.

The second set brought more of a battle for the lead with both teams tying the score on seven occasions. It came down to a close call with the score tied at 30 before the Storm scored the last two points to make the score of the game 2-0.

Going into the third set, the Eagles started a comeback taking the lead a few times before the score became tied at 21 points each. The Eagles then came from behind scoring to end the set 25-23, taking their first set victory of the game.

The fourth set brought another explosive Eagle lead with a 12-3 score before taking the set 25-19 and evening the game record at 2-2 to add a fifth and deciding set.

The deciding set brought a tough battle between the Eagles and the Storm with Ashland carrying on their momentum from the previous two sets and coming out on top winning 15-12.

Senior right-side hitter, Alli Cudworth ended the game with 11 kills and 20 digs. Cudworth also became the third player in program history and the second in the season to have 1,000 career kills and 1,000 career digs.

Freshman Shelby Woycik set a career high in kills recording 25. Fellow freshman Sophi Cudworth also recorded 13 kills while Casey Clark added 11 kills and 15 digs. Reanne Neal was also on the board with 10 kills. Sophomore Kayla Pfeiffer added a career high as well with 59 assists.

The Eagles were back in action on Sunday (Nov. 20) in the GLIAC Tournament championship match against No. 1 seed Ferris State. This was the second time in four season that the Eagles played in a championship match.

The first set brought a tough battle between the two teams, with the score being tied five times all within a point of each other. The last tie being at 26-all gave the Eagles a chance at taking the first set before the Bulldogs scored two consecutive points ending the set 28-26.

The second set brought an explosive start from the Bulldogs as they scored the first five points before a kill by Alli Cudworth tied the score up at 8-all. After a small pull away lead by the Bulldogs, Cudworth again tied up the score at 19-all. The Eagles managed to keep the Bulldogs leading by one point until back to back kills by the Bulldogs earned them the second set (25-22) and leading the match 2-0.

Going into the third set, the Bulldogs took a 2-0 lead before a kill by Shelby Woycik put the Eagles on the board. The Bulldogs then took a five point lead before extending their lead over the Eagles to 25-14 to take the third set and the match at 3-0.

Cudworth recorded a game high of 12 kills and 14 digs with Woycik close behind with 10 kills. Senior outside-hitter Casey Clark had seven kills and 10 digs while sophomore setter Kayla Pfeiffer added 29 assists. Cudworth and Woycik were named to the all-tournament team following the match.

The Eagles were able to qualify for the NCAA Division II Midwest Regional Quarterfinal match that will be played on December 1 against No. 3 seed Lewis. This is the first time since 2013 that the Eagles qualified for the quarterfinals. The Eagles are seeded at No. 6 going into the match.