Oct. 5, 2012
ALLENDALE, Mich. - The Grand Valley State volleyball team entered rare territory on Friday (Oct. 5) night, becoming only the seventh NCAA Division II program in history to reach 1,000 victories.
The Lakers did so with an exclamation point, disposing of Lake Erie College 3-0 (25-14, 25-17, 25-20) to move to 12-4 on the year and 5-3 in the GLIAC. The Storm fall to 3-11 on the season with an 0-8 mark in the conference.
GVSU got out to a fast start, going up 4-0 in the first set and didn't meet much resistance, eventually pushing the lead to a commanding 23-6 after three straight kills from junior Abby Ebels (McBain, Mich./Northern Michigan Christian) and a service ace from junior Sacha Gill (Muncie, Ind.).
The Storm made things difficult for the Lakers the rest of the set, scoring eight of the next nine points to cut the lead to 24-14. A kill from freshman Betsy Ronda (Grand Rapids, Mich./East Grand Rapids) put the set away, however, 25-14.
The Lakers once again applied pressure right off the bat in set two, going up 8-3 in the early going. After three straight points from Lake Erie cut the lead to 8-6, GVSU went on a three-point run of their own courtesy of a service error, kill from sophomore Abby Aiken (Onsted, Mich.) and a block from senior Eno Umoh (Wyoming, Mich./Park) and junior Sam Phillips (Vicksburg, Mich.) to push the lead back up to 11-6.
GVSU took advantage of three Storm attack errors sprinkled in between two kills each from Ronda and junior Megan Schroeder (Racine, Wisc./Kishwaukee JC) to eventually balloon the second set lead to 20-10 before Lake Erie went on another three-point run. The Lakers met some more resistance from the Storm after taking a 24-14 lead, but were able to put the set away with a kill from redshirt freshman Alyssa Wolfram (Hamilton, Mich.) to take the set by a 25-17 margin, holding the Storm to a -.062 hitting percentage in the stanza.
Lake Erie got off to a much better start in the third set, jumping out to a 6-3 lead on the Lakers, but GVSU stormed back by winning 10 of the next 13 points, including two kills each by Aiken, Ronda and Schroeder in the run, taking a 13-9 lead.
GVSU would keep the hot hitting going in the final set, dispatching of the Storm by a 25-20 margin thanks to a .389 hitting percentage in the set.
Ronda tallied a match-high 13 kills on 31 attempts (.226) to go with 10 digs, while Ebels and Aiken each contributed nine kills, Aiken's efforts coming without an error in the match. Sophomore Clair Ruhenkamp (Fort Loramie, Ohio) and freshman Stephanie Camper (St. Charles, Ill./East) split the setting duties, notching 21 and 17 assists, respectively.
The Lakers hit .298 for the match, their second-best hitting percentage of the season, and collected 47 kills. Lake Erie was held to only a .060 hitting percentage in the contest.
GVSU's victory put the Lakers in a class of only seven to hit 1,000 program victories, as GVSU now sits with a team record of 1000-471 over the 43 year history of the program. The Lakers have accomplished the feat with only two head coaches in team history, as Joan Boand led the team to 545 victories between 1969 and 1994, while current head coach Deanne Scanlon, currently in her 18th season, has now tallied 455 wins for the program.
A 1,000th victory celebration will be hosted before the match against Ashland on Saturday (Oct. 6) at 4 p.m. in the GVSU Fieldhouse Arena.