Volleyball looks to bounce back after tough home losses


Joclyn Haven

The volleyball team huddles together during their 1-3 loss to Kansas City Oct. 13 at Frost Arena.

Chloe Risse, Sports Reporter

After dropping the last two games at Frost Arena, the Jackrabbit volleyball team travels to Omaha and Denver to continue their Summit League schedule.

“I think everyone in the program is very disappointed about the results this last week, and not just having two losses at home consecutively, but just the way we played at home was very upsetting,” coach Dan Georgalas said.

The Jackrabbits played both teams earlier in the season in Frost Arena. The Jacks had a tough victory over Omaha in five sets and fell to Denver in four sets.

“We are looking through the windshield and not the rearview mirror,” Georgalas said. “We got four straight road games coming up against the top four teams in the league.”

Omaha is currently on a seven-game win streak with a conference record of 7-2. Their last loss was to the Jackrabbits Sept. 24. The Mavericks have been dominating the conference lately, winning 18 of their last 19 sets. As a team, they have 1,001 kills and averaging 13.9 kills per set. Their opponents collectively have put up 872 kills, which averages to 12.1 kills per set. 

Although Omaha dominates offensively, they are not at an advantage when it comes to defense. They average 14.3 digs per set compared to their opponents 14.5. They also are behind their opponents in blocks, achieving 2.4 per set with their opponents at 2.5.

“Since we beat Omaha a couple weeks ago, they had an amazing stretch of six straight sweeps,” Georgalas said.

The Mavericks have two big offensive players: Shayla McCormick and Marriah Buss. McCormick averages 3.85 kills and 4.51 points per set. Buss is next in line with 3.39 kills and 3.64 points per set. Sami Clark helps her team get these stats by averaging 9.9 assists per set.

After their matchup with Omaha, the Jackrabbits will then head to Denver.

The Pioneers are currently 6-3 in the Summit League. They won their most recent game against North Dakota in five sets. Denver also has a dynamic offense, averaging 12.7 kills per set while their opponents are averaging 11.8. They are also outperforming their opponents in both digs and blocks, averaging 13.9 and 2.9 respectively. Their opponents have an average of 13.4 digs and 2.3 blocks.

Hailey Green and Jordan Lockwood are the offensive powerhouses for Denver when it comes to kills. Green averages 3.47 kills per set followed by Lockwood with 2.88. Green and Lockwood also lead the team in points per set scoring 3.72 and 3.41 points on average.

The Jacks are looking to come home with a couple marks in the win column after a tough week at home. The Jackrabbits fell to Kansas City and Oral Roberts. After last weekend, the Jacks have less kills and assists. With that, there are multiple aspects in which the team is playing well. They are averaging 15.3 digs, 2 blocks and 1.5 aces per set.

Fifth year senior Crystal Burk leads the team in kills and digs. Sophomore Ella Thompson is second on the team with kills but is still 200 kills behind Burk. Transfer Raegen Reilly contributes to the team with a total of 816 assists. The defense relies on fifth year senior Sydney Andrews, who leads the team with 77 blocks, followed by Thompson with 47.

“I know our group is just real excited to get back out there again and prove that we are capable of something different,” Georgalas said.