Saginaw Valley’s volleyball team defeated Lake Superior State 25-16/25-16/25-17 in a set sweep on Nov. 9. With the sweep the Cardinals completed the season sweep, taking all six sets from the Lakers this season.
Head coach Will Stanton said despite good scores the team was not at its best.
“We got the job done,” he said. “The scores looked great, but our play itself wasn’t quite the high level we want it to be.”
Saginaw consistently started out slow, eventually finding its footing late in each set.
“Each set took us a little while to get rolling,” Stanton said.
Set one started out 4-4 until the Cardinals fought its way to a six-point run that propelled the team to a first set victory.
In set two, the Cardinals had a lead that the Lakers cut down to three points before SVSU scored its final six-points in a row to take two sets to zero lead.
In the final set, the Lakers led 11-13 before senior hitter Sarah Tabit and the Cardinals put the set away 25-17.
Near the end of the third set, senior Olivia Dean was called upon to serve while nursing an obvious limp. Dean served twice, scoring one point before the Lakers earned the ball back.
Immediately following the change of serve, Dean was removed from the game.
Stanton said Dean was a strong player.
“Dean started the first half of the season for us until she got hurt during a collision in practice,” he said. “She is not to a point where she can do everything yet, but she is one of the top servers in the conference, so we try to get her in any way that we can.”
The win for the Cardinals improved its record to 18-7 this season and 10-4 in conference play. This record is good enough for fourth place in the GLIAC, and SVSU still has a chance to end up as high as second.
Stanton said the team has had success and good chemistry.
“I think it’s a mix of both,” he said. “The team needs to get along to start the winning, and our senior class is doing a good job contributing and supporting the team.”