Volleyball splits 2-game road trip

Taylor Costa, [email protected]

ULM’s volleyball team fell short on the road against Appalachian State on Friday.
ULM looked to feed off their big win against Louisiana Tech earlier in the week but couldn’t take flight in the Sun Belt loss against the Mountaineers.
The Warhawks took a 16-12 lead in the first set after a great play by Taylor Wood, senior middle blocker, pushed the Mountaineers to commit back-to-back errors. ULM then committed three errors of their own, which allowed Appalachian State to tie the set at 21-21. A back and forth battle ended when the Mountaineers won the first set 27-25.
“We had a great first set and really pushed the home team,” coach Russ Friedland said.
Losing the first set was the turning point in the match for the Warhawks. “I’m happy with what we put out there, but we just didn’t respond well to that set loss,” Friedland said.
The Warhawks hit a match-best .240 but trailed the Mountaineers the entire second set. ULM couldn’t stop the clean Appalachain State attack despite their defense taking a stand and holding the Mountaineers to only hit a .140 or less in the first and third sets. Appalachian State committed only five errors and won the set 25-16.
Both teams had a negative hitting percentage in the third set. The Mountaineers had 10 service aces while ULM had only one service error, which is the lowest of the season. Appalachian State won the final set 25-21.
The loss dropped ULM to a 7-9 record and 0-3 in conference play, but there were positives that will help move the team forward. Friedland said their block has been strong all season, and they continue to use it to their advantage.
“We’ve seen ourselves be really efficient and really powerful, we just need to string it together for longer periods of time through the match,” Friedland said.
Friedland also said that senior Sarah Woods had a great match at the net, and out passing is getting better as the season progresses.
Senior setter, Presleigh Williams, said, “Our communication was great throughout the match, and our serve receive in the first set was awesome.”
ULM had 26 kills during the match. Senior Sarah Woods led the team with seven of them. ULM had six players with kills in addition to Woods. Taylor Wood, Catherine Griffith, Mikeala Worley, Cali Assaley and Lauren Appleman got in the killing business as well. It was the sixth time ULM didn’t reach the 30-kill mark, and they didn’t win a single set in those matches.
Both teams posted seven blocks during the game. ULM committed 18 errors while Appalachian State committed a total of 48.
Albany Schaffer lead the defensive play for the Warhawks with 13 digs. Wood also earned five blocks, and Williams led the Warhawks in assist with 13 in the loss.
ULM was coming off of a thrilling victory after traveling to Ruston and beating the Techsters (3-2).The Warhawks will finish their road trip in Conway, S.C. as they face conference opponent Coastal Carolina.