After tough losses, volleyball is hopeful for their next season

In the Nov. 4 game against Whitman, the women’s volleyball team won 25-22 in their first patch. Sam Yorke ’19 collected three serves and the match ended with 23 point-earned passes from Mikayla Lopez ’19.

“It was a great match, fought well by both teams,” said head coach Stacie Matz-Gordon, who has been working to fight the mental slump that the team has been in.

“It shows that they have heart, that they want it, they have grit, and it also shows that they’re physically capable. So it’s not the physical pieces for us, and to address that, and to know our limitations right now, and to address those limitations and to be better than we were the day before,” said Matz-Gordon.

Starting off the second match with the Pioneers up 19-14, the game was seeming to pull in a positive. The next seven straight points from Whitman, however, took LC’s chances of winning the second set.

“That’s the deal with sports,” said Matz-Gordon. “You will get another chance and that should be defining of who you are. Not that you made a mistake, not that you lost a match, but what do you do after.” All season Coach Matz-Gordon has been emphasizing the importance of a positive mental state when entering these games. A goal which is especially hard after so many losses.

To defend the work of her athletes, Matz-Gordon said “These student athletes in the Division III level sacrifice a lot to do what they do and they do it really well and I just want them to be so proud of themselves when they look in the mirror every day.”

The wins of the day being Julia Somers ’19 making her seventh double-double match with 17 kills and 13 digs, then Alexe Navarro ’17 making 27 digs.

“We continue to see growth in the team and the program,” said Coach Matz-Gordon, “but it isn’t translating into the wins as we had hoped this year. We are going to learn from this match and use the positives in tomorrow’s match with Whitworth. We are keeping our head up after this match.”

The women’s volleyball season came to a close as the Pioneers lost to the Whitworth Pirates at the Whitworth Fieldhouse.

As far as next season goes, 16 of the 18 member of this last season’s players are expected to return. The two members not returning are Alexe Navarro ’17 and Bridgette Henningsen ’17, as they will be graduating this spring. The seniors played their last game as LC students in the Nov. 5 game. Navarro earned the Northwestern Conference Libero of the Year award and finished with a total of 1,768 digs.

The Pioneers end the season with nine out of their 10 games lost in the NWC.

In response, Coach Matz-Gordon said, “We really got pushed, and we got pushed in all the right places for us to really ignite the change that we really want to make and to define what Lewis & Clark Volleyball is … for us it’s the mental battle that we’re working through and that we’re committed as a group as a unit all of us as a program are committed to make a shift into.”

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