Blue Streaks snap three-game skid

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Blue Streaks snap three-game skid

Senior Jenna Dvorsky follows through on a kill attempt (1) as Shannon Atwell (8) looks on in a game at the DeCarlo Varsity Center on Oct. 12.

Senior Jenna Dvorsky follows through on a kill attempt (1) as Shannon Atwell (8) looks on in a game at the DeCarlo Varsity Center on Oct. 12.

Senior Jenna Dvorsky follows through on a kill attempt (1) as Shannon Atwell (8) looks on in a game at the DeCarlo Varsity Center on Oct. 12.

Senior Jenna Dvorsky follows through on a kill attempt (1) as Shannon Atwell (8) looks on in a game at the DeCarlo Varsity Center on Oct. 12.

Kyle Kelly, Sports Editor

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They knew they had to shake off three consecutive losses. And that is exactly what the Blue Streaks volleyball team did on Saturday, Oct. 12, with 3-0 wins over Capital University and the University of Pitt-Bradford.  

After starting out the season with a scorching hot 15-3 overall record, the Blue and Gold fell 0-3, 1-3, 1-3 against nationally-ranked Muskingum and Whittenberg, and also Mount Union.

“It was very important [to win], since we are heading into the tougher half of the OAC,” sophomore Brooke Hjerpe told The Carroll News. “These two wins brought a lot of momentum to the team.”

In front of an attendance of 221, the Capital Crusaders nearly made it four losses in a row for the Blue Streaks. Midway through the first set, JCU found themselves down 15-12. In the final set, Capital inched within one point, but a kill by Carleen Ellerbruch secured the win.

The Blue Streaks outscored the Crusaders 10-8 in the opening set and were aided by a 25-13 domination in the second set. 

Against Pitt-Bradford, the Blue and Gold wasted no time in getting ahead early. JCU put the Panthers in their place with a 25-11 win in the first set. However, the opposition fought and clawed their way back into the next two sets. 

Pitt-Bradford went on a late three-point run in the second set to even the score at 23. JCU responded with kills by Ava Nice and Brooke Hjerpe.

“It was crucial to finish the set off strong and still have that momentum,” Hjerpe said. “Volleyball is easily influenced by energy, so maintaining and building it is very important.”

Hjerpe finished the second match with a team-high 17 digs and six kills. She registered nine kills against Capital in the first game. 

In the third set, a seven-point spark gave Pitt-Bradford the 24-23 lead and with the game on the line, it was the steady sophomore Cassi Calamunci who scored the final two points to secure JCU’s win. 

“I think the whole team came in focused for this weekend,” Hjerpe said. “We knew that we can’t underestimate any team. So we knew if we started strong, with a lot of energy, we would come out on top. We have also focused a lot on consistency during practices, so we came into the game with that mindset, which helps reduce errors.”