The Lady Lions fall to Christendom and Johnson and Wales

Maria going for a block.
Maria going for a block.

By: Matylda Zamudio

Monaca, Pa. -- The Lady Lions took on both Christendom Johnson and Wales at home Saturday evening, falling to both teams during day 1 of the USCAA Women's Volleyball Tournament.

During the first match, Beaver's came out aggression as they dominated the first set, 25-18.

This early win fueled Beaver in the first few minutes of set two, replicating the hustle of the previous set.  As the game progressed, Christendom revved-up their offense as the set went back and forth in lead changes. However, the Lady Lions' offense, once again, outplayed Christendom and won the set 25-19.

While the 2-0 set advantage added to the excitement of the Beaver home-crowd during the third set, the mood shifted as Christendom fought back against the 2-set deficit, outscoring Beaver 25-23.

Going into the fourth set, the Lady Lions struggled defensively, resulting in Christendom taking an early 8-0 lead. Then, Beaver's offense got hot with a 6-point rally, cutting the lead to 11-15. However, Christendom didn't let up on offense and won the set 25-23.

The fifth set, Beaver struggled initially in the first few minutes, but then took a 10-9 lead. However, Christendom went on the attack and won the set with a final score of 11-15, handing the ladies their first defeat.

Offensively, senior Brooke Tomasko and freshman Stephanie Stadjuhar led the team; Tomasko with 17 kills and Stadjuhar with 10 kills. Junior Alexis Albrecht also scored 5 aces, adding to the team's offense score. On defense, freshman Maria Slater had 5 solo blocks and 4 blocks, Stadjuhar had 6 digs and Heaven Bowman finished with 5 digs.

With the sting of the first match loss fresh in their minds, the Lady Lions looked to even the score with a win against Johnson and Wales.

As the match commenced, Beaver struggled with passing and lost the first set 20-25. While Beaver was on the verge of a comeback after being down 6-15 in the second set, they fought their way back into striking distance and got the score up to 19-24 with a few minutes left in the set. However, Beaver couldn't stop Johnson and Wales from scoring on their last possession, losing the set 19-25.

During the third set, Beaver tried to recover and spark their defense but was outscored 20-25, losing their second match of the evening.

The game leaders for Beaver included Stadjuhar on both the offensive and defensive side of the ball, where she produced 6 kills and 14 digs. She was followed by Slater, who had 4 kills and 14 solo blocks. Freshman Emily Keener also aided the team with 14 assists. On defense, Bowman and Albrecht led with 10 digs.

Beaver will play at home again this Saturday at 10 a.m. Their next opponent is TBD.