VIENNA - Glenville State College volleyball coach Camai Roberson intended to issue travel jerseys to her squad at some point this week.
After the Pioneers outlasted Ohio Valley University in five sets (22-25, 23-25, 25-22, 26-24, 15-11) Monday night at Snyder Activity Center, she figures there is not better time than the present to reward her players with their new outfits.
"The players wanted them yesterday, but I told them they are not getting them until they win," Roberson said.
Photo by Jeff Baughan
Ohio Valley University's Taylor Buchtmann has her spike sent back to her by Glenville State's Ella Messinger, left, and Heather Stout Monday. Glenville rallied from a 2-0 game deficit to win three straight and take a 3-2 victory.
GSC overcame several obstacles to record its first West Virginia Intercollegiate Athletic Conference in three tries this season. The Pioneers were whistled for an illegal shift on consecutive points in the third set then committed four straight service errors in the fourth set.
"As a young team, the errors that you can control you have to control," Roberson said. "But we didn't do that and fortunately we made up for that in other areas."
After rallying from a 20-18 deficit in the first set and again from 19-17 down in the second set, OVU (4-18, 1-6) could not find a solution for GSC's front line. Leading the charge for the Pioneers was lefty Dejana Ludoski, a junior from Serbia who finished with a match-high 19 kills despite playing with a slightly injured groin.
"(Dejana) is a force when she chooses to be," Roberson continued. "She is an amazing hitter and she is an emotional barometer for the team. When she picks it up, like she did in the last three sets, she can bring in a little more heat."
In the deciding fifth set, OVU took a 3-0 lead behind kills from Mallory Kelley and Latoschia Taylor. The last of Taylor's team-high 13 kills kept her ballclub in front 4-2.
GSC then turned the tables following an OVU service error and outscored the Fighting Scots 7-1.
Warren High School product Hannah McMichael distributed two of her 13 assists to keep OVU within striking distance at 10-8, but the Fighting Scots could not narrow the deficit any further.
On the second match point of the night and GSC leading 14-11, OVU's Amanda Weatherwax made a spectacular save on a GSC spike but the rest of her teammates were caught out of position as Stefanie Gladders tipped the return back over the home team's side of the net and into an open space on the floor for the gamewinner.
"We beat ourselves the last three sets," OVU coach Paul Jacoby said. "I'm disappointed in our team, and they are disappointed in themselves. We just have to pick it up."
Gladders led GSC with 29 assists, while Jessica Simpson paced OVU in that department with 30. OVU won the battle of the service aces 20-11 thanks to a match-high five from Weatherwax.