AURORA, N.Y. – Penn State Harrisburg came just within five points of picking up its fourth win of the 2012 season on Saturday, Sep. 22. The Lions took Morrisville State to the limit in game one of the North Eastern Athletic Conference (NEAC) crossover event hosted by Wells College before falling to the Mustangs in five sets 22-25, 23-25, 25-20, 25-23 and 10-15. The blue and white had a tougher go of things in game number two. The ladies dropped their second outing to SUNYIT in straight sets 25-12, 25-12, 25-17.
As she has been for most of the season, junior Chidere Igwe (West Orange, N.J. / West Orange) was the team's offensive stud against Morrisville as she recorded ten kills. Senior Michelle Pellechia (Allentown, Pa. / Catasauqua) and freshman Olivia Umoren (Quincy, Mass. / North Quincy) were also stout offensively, chipping in with seven kills apiece. Pellechia added a match-high five service aces.
Freshman Melissa Ganz (Weston, Fl. / Cypress Bay) led the way defensively for the blue and white with an impressive 14 digs. Umoren was strong as well, digging out nine balls and senior Miranda Jumper (Lebanon, Pa. / Lebanon) pitched in with eight. Igwe performed well at the net as she blocked four Mustang shots by herself and added another assisted block.
Setters Katie Shek (Old Bridge, N.J. / Old Bridge) and Beth Findley (New Providence, Pa. / Solanco) did their jobs admirably. Shek assisted on 16 shots while Findley added 12 assists of her own.
After falling behind two sets to none against Morrisville, the ladies showed great heart by fighting back to draw even with the Mustangs. Unfortunately, they fell just a few points short of completing the comeback story.
The nightcap against SUNYIT was a bit rougher for Penn State Harrisburg. The Wildcats jumped out to a big lead in the opening set and never looked back.
The Lions managed just ten kills in their second match of the day and this time it was Umoren, Pellechia and sophomore Jessica Sinex (Oxford, Pa. / Oxford) who led the way with two each.
It was Ganz and sophomore Erin Goodyear (Boiling Springs, Pa. / Boiling Springs) who recorded the most digs for Penn State Harrisburg with five apiece.
Shek and Findley managed just four assists each against the Wildcats.
The Lions aren't done at Wells College just yet. The blue and white will get one more crack at picking up a win this weekend when they take on the host Express in the last match of the crossover on Sunday, Sep. 23.