The Wyoming Cowgirls were unable to pull the upset against No. 24 Colorado State University Rams in volleyball Tuesday night at the UniWyo Sports Complex in Laramie. The Cowgirls fell to their rival CSU in three games by scores of 17-15, 21-25, 13-25. The Cowgirls put up a fight in the first two sets but CSU dominated in the third set.
For the Cowgirls, Halie McArdle led with nine kills while Taraphagan would add seven more kills. Marissa Harmon added 24 assists to the offensive effort. Defensively Lily Austin had 12 digs. Traphagan and Reed Copeland each had four blocks for the Cowgirls.
For CSU Sanja Cizmic had 13 kills and Breana Runnels added 11 more on the night. Katie Olekask had a game-high
34 assists. Jensen-Hougaard led both teams with six blocks while both Olekask, Cizmic, and McKenna Thronlow had nine digs in the game.
Wyoming did not let CSU lead in the first set until CSU went up 16-15. Before that Wyoming either led or was tied with CSU. The teams were tied at four different points during the first set before CSU took the lead. Once CSU gained the lead they would go on a 10-2 run to win the first set by a score of 25-17.
The Cowgirls came out with a balanced attack with three different players tying for the most kills, Marissa Harmon, Tara Traphagan, and Halie McArdle. Harmon also added seven assists in the first set. Lily Austin recorded 3 digs in the first set and Tara Traphagan added a block to the defensive effort.
CSU was led by Brenna Runnels with five kills and Katie Oleksak added ten assists. Oleksak and Amanda Young each had two digs.
Wyoming tied with CSU nine separate times within the first twelve points of the match. CSU put together a couple of small runs during the last half of the set to win the set by a score of 25-21. Wyoming did not trail by more than four points throughout the set but never tied the game back up or took the lead in the last half of the set. Wyoming had eight errors during the set and CSU had seven. Four of Wyoming’s second set errors were from serves. The set ended due to a Service Error by Wyoming.
In the second set, McArdle led Wyoming with four kills and Harmon added ten more assists. Austin had 8 more digs in the second set.
For CSU Sanja Cizmic led the Rams with six kills and Oleksak added 13 more assists to her total. McKenna Thronlow led the defensive effort with seven digs.
The third and final set was not kind to the Cowgirls. CSU jumped out to a huge lead of 19-6. The Cowgirls were not able to find any traction during the set losing by a score of 25-13.
In the third set McArdle and Traphagan each had three kills while Harmon had seven assists. Reed Copeland had four blocks in the final set.
Cizmic had five kills in the final set and Oleksak added 11 more assists to her night.
Wyoming has now lost six sets in a row. At times Wyoming is able to play with any teams and other times they cannot put a run together. The inconsistent play has hurt the Cowgirls and they have another game in two days allowing time for adjusting their strategy and play.
Head coach Chad Callihan commented after the game that he sees talent in his players but they are unable to play consistently. Currently, he is trying to figure out how to get the team to play more consistently but there is little time for this.
The Cowgirls will travel to Colorado Springs on Wednesday and play against the Airforce on Thursday. With this quick of a turnaround Callihan has no time to try to make a lot of adjustments to the Cowgirls play. One thing the Cowgirls can improve on is the amount of Service Errors they record. The Cowgirls had ten total Service Errors on the night, some of which coach Callihan called “unaggressive.”
The Cowgirls fell to 6-9 on the season and 1-2 in conference play.