Sept. 9, 2011
By Leah Sakdol
Athletic Media Relations
FORT COLLINS, Colo. – After a tough battle, the No. 14-ranked CSU volleyball team fell to the Wichita State Shockers, 3-1, Friday night at Moby Arena.
“I was extremely disappointed in what we did in the end-game situation,” said Head Coach Tom Hilbert. “It’s going to be that kind of a match against a team like this, and we played with a great deal of fear and not very much aggression.”
CSU held on strong during the first set, but after 13 tied scores and eight lead changes, Wichita State came away with a 28-26 decision to open the match.
The Rams regained composure in the second set and evened the score with a 25-19 victory. But Wichita State came back to beat CSU in the third and fourth sets 25-20, and 25-22, respectively, handing the Rams (5-2) their second loss of the season. The Shockers improved to 4-3 overall.
The Rams played hard, out-hitting the Shockers .238-.220. Unfortunately, CSU was not blocking as well as usual, averaging only 1.75 blocks a set. The Rams entered the match averaging 2.92 blocks per set.
“We did not block the way we needed to,” said Hilbert, “I’ve said many times that if we’re not blocking then we’re not very good, because it’s the main weapon that we have. In the long run, we did not win it. We outhit this team, and we still did not win.”
Senior Katelyn Steffan and junior Dana Cranston both recorded double-doubles. Steffan had a career-high 21 kills and a career-high 15 digs, while Cranston established career bests with 12 kills and 13 digs.
The loss is CSU’s first in four meetings vs. the Shockers, and just the program’s 13th loss under Hilbert when hosting regular-season tournaments (59-13, .819 winning percentage).
The Rams return to Moby Saturday night to take on Northern Colorado in the final night of the Rams Volleyball Classic presented by Poudre Valley Health System. The players will be donning Aggie orange uniforms for the annual “Orange Out” match. Fans who also attend the football game Saturday can bring their ticket stub to receive a general-admission ticket for only $3.