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SMC Volleyball: Calvin sweeps by Belles

Michael Bryan | Monday, September 25, 2006

Saint Mary’s has grown accustomed to handling the broom – sweeping six of its past seven matches in straight sets. But Sunday it found itself on the underside of the stick, falling 3-0 to undefeated Calvin.

The Belles were overwhelmed by a powerful and deep Knights team (30-21, 30-23, 30-20). The win extended Calvin’s fast start to MIAA play, lifting the team’s conference record to 6-0, 13-1 overall. The Knight’s streak has propelled them into the No. 24 spot in the Division III rankings. Saint Mary’s, meanwhile, fell to 10-3 and 3-2 in MIAA play.

Belles coach Julie Schroeder-Biek was not disheartened by the results.

“We played a very good team and our players responded well to the competition,” Schroeder-Biek said. “The team learns from these matches and approaches the next competition with an even stronger will to win.”

The Knights received a huge contribution from their seniors, with outstanding performances from Katy Luimes, Kristen Kalb, and Lorilyn Vogel. The three combined for 38 kills, and setter Katie Zondervan contributed a match-high 44 assists.

The Belles’ offensive effort was led by freshman Lorna Slupczysnki who recorded 9 kills to go along with 10 digs. Seniors Anne Cusack and Kristen Playko led the way defensively with 19 and 13 digs respectively.

Saint Mary’s will have to rebound quickly, as the Belles have four matches this week beginning with Tri-State on Tuesday. Schroeder-Biek emphasized the importance of this week to the team.

“With three conference matches this week, it will really set the tone for how our season will play out,” she said. “We really will need to prepare and tighten up our own game if we want to accomplish the high goals we have set for ourselves this season.”

After the match with Tri-State the Belles will once again hit the road with three away matches. The Belles travel to Bethel Thursday and will conclude the busy week with a doubleheader against Albion and Adrian on Sunday.