Volleyball takes third place at Oswego Tournament

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The Oswego State volleyball team won their final three games in the 2009 Oswego State Volleyball Invitational, finishing in third place out of the seven teams competing.

The tournament was held on Oct. 9 and 10 in the Max Ziel Gymnasium, as Oswego State hosted teams from around New York State to determine women’s volleyball supremacy.

The Lakers dropped their first game in the tournament, falling to Medaille College in four sets (26-24, 21-25, 21-25, 18-25). In the loss, senior Alyssa Brock and sophomore Katie van Kessel each contributed seven kills against a tough opponent in Medaille. The Mavericks from Medaille College went on to finish second in the weekend tournament.

"We proved in the first set that we were capable of beating them, but sometimes we get hung up on our mistakes and it cripples us from playing our game," junior Elizabeth Crouch said.

The Lakers would find their stride in their next match, against Alfred University. After dropping the first set the Lakers were on a roll, winning the next three sets on the way to a four set victory (22-25, 25-15, 25-11, 25-10). Sophomore Jess Isgro recorded 19 kills in the match against Alfred to go along with the 10 kills added by van Kessel, helping the Lakers to their first victory of the weekend.

"We did really well and it started to click for us," Crouch said. "We were starting to gel together."

On the next morning, the Lakers picked up where they left off with Alfred University, only this time they were facing the Mustangs of SUNY Morrisville. The Lakers recorded a 3-1 victory in their first match of the day (25-22, 18-25, 25-16, 25-21). Oswego State proved to be too much as Crouch decided to put on a clinic on the proper way to distribute the ball, recording 30 assists. Isgro again added double-digit kills, with 17, and freshman Shauna Westrack added 28 digs in the win for the Lakers.

"We all relaxed, had fun and played our game," Crouch said. "When we’re comfortable and enjoy what we’re doing that’s when we play our best."

With the win, the Lakers improved to 2-1 in the tournament, earning them a showdown with D’Youville College for third place. The Lakers had the first set slip away from them, but rebounded quickly, posting a 3-1 victory (22-25, 25-21, 25-20, 25-15). The Lakers used the same formula from their previous win against Morrisville State again in this one, as Isgro racked up another 22 kills, Westrack accumulated another 20 digs and Crouch set up her teammates well, collecting 29 assists in the final game of the weekend for the Lakers.

Jess Isgro was named to the all-tournament team, leading the Lakers in kills over the weekend, as Oswego State moved to 7-18 overall this season.

The Lakers will travel to Fredonia to compete in the SUNYAC West Pool Play on Friday, Oct. 23, and Saturday, Oct. 24, hoping to improve on a successful weekend in the Oswego State Volleyball Invitational.