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Belles’ Bethel trip crucial

Justin Stetz | Tuesday, September 14, 2004

The Saint Mary’s volleyball team hopes to earn its second win of the season as they travel to take on Bethel College today. After beating Tri-State University over the weekend, the Belles are looking to start a new streak.”Capturing our first win against Tri-State gave our team some much needed confidence and showed us how good it feels to win as a team,” junior outside attacker Michelle Turley said.A year ago, Saint Mary’s lost to Bethel at home on Oct. 2 in three straight games. So far this season, the Pilots are 3-1. In its first tournament of the season, Bethel knocked off two ranked teams by wide margins. The Pilots should be a difficult test for the Belles. “Our focus is always the same whether we are playing Bethel or Tri-State,” Turley said. “We need to play as a team and with intensity and drive, while playing our game and having fun.”In last season’s match, junior middle hitter Shelly Bender and sophomore libero Anne Cusack performed well on defense, as did sophomore setter Lauren Temple. On offense, Michelle Gary and Elise Rupright provided valuable play, but it wasn’t enough as they were defeated 30-26, 30-28 and 30-22.Over the last couple of years, Bethel has had its way with Saint Mary’s. The Pilots have swept the Belles in three games during each of the past two seasons.Nonetheless, after recording their first win and getting some rest this past weekend, the Belles are excited to finally get back out on the court.The game will give Saint Mary’s a good idea of where it now stands in the MIAA and where they are headed. The Belles need every win they can get to ensure they will still be playing come November. “Having a few days off gave everyone a much needed rest,” Turley said. “We were all feeling the exhaustion from the competitive schedule we had the last two weeks, so hopefully being well rested will help us to regroup and refocus for our matches this week.”The game begins at 6:00 p.m. at Bethel. Following the game, the Belles will not play again until Saturday afternoon against Adrian. That game will start at 4:00 at Saint Mary’s.