Heating Up

Volleyball wins two in a row against USD, WIU

The SDSU volleyball team is on a two-game winning streak as they defeated the University of South Dakota Coyotes last Tuesday and the Western Illinois University Leathernecks last Friday. 

Everyone on this team, coaches included, had some firsts after their win against USD last Tuesday at Frost Arena. This was the first time SDSU beat USD since 2010. It was the first time they had beaten them at home since 2003. Head Coach Nicole Cirillo also recorded her first career conference victory. 

“That’s kind of a big deal.” Cirillo said. “Yes, all those things are important, but at the end of the day, we played a match and we won.” 

They also snapped a couple of losing streaks with this victory. Heading into the matchup, the Jacks had lost 21 games in a row in Summit League play dating back to 2013. They also had lost their last 16 games overall.

“It’s been a long time.” Cirllo said. “It’s easy to take it as momentum; I think moving forward is all that we can do.”

“I think we’ve been consistently competing and it has gotten us comfortable in that role of playing to win and not to lose,” Cirillo said. “There’s a process that has to happen in order to learn to win and what we’ve been doing since the start of conference came to life tonight.”

Junior outside hitter Nazya Thies continued her impressive season with 12 kills and only three errors. She also finished with an attack percentage of .346. 

“It was fun to be out there, I felt like it was a whole new environment with the team, we were excited, we were playing together, overall it was just a great win.” Thies said. “I stayed playing relaxed; sometimes when I get too worked up or anxious then I make errors, so I just tried to have a cleared mind.” 

The Jacks hit the road on Friday and came out victorious defeating Western Illinois three sets to one. 

“[This was] our best offensive showing this year,” Cirillo said. “We were consistent throughout the entire match and just played great volleyball.”

Outside hitters Ashley Beaner and Mikayla Hora each had career-highs, recording 20 and 25 kills, respectively.

“They both have shown that they can do that, it just kind of came together Friday night, every time they touched the ball there were very few times it didn’t hit the floor.” Cirillo said.

The Jacks now have an overall record of 3-20 and 2-5 in the Summit League. 

“It really all came together; we’ve been playing good since the start of the season, it was just starting on Tuesday all of our attackers were on the same page for the first time.” Cirillo said.

The Jackrabbits return home this Friday when they take on the Denver University Pioneers at 7 p.m. in Frost Arena.