Volleyball team secures victory over Carlow

Photo by Liz Hunter
Senior right side hitter, Kristen Burkes, blocks a shot from Carlow on September 20. Point Park won their match, 3-0.

Written By Dara Collins

The Pioneers volleyball squad maintained its momentum from its previous wins to bag a victory against the Carlow University Celtics last week.

Point Park swept their cross-town rival on Tuesday, Sept. 20, 3-0. The Pioneers are now 7-12 and proudly hold an undefeated 3-0 River States Conference record.

“We took care of the ball when we had to,” head coach Mike Bruno said. “We were fortunate to come out with a 3-0 win.”

Set one ended in a victory for the Pioneers at 25-19 after a well-placed tip by setter Emily Meng. As a team with big hitters, it is beneficial to throw off opponents with different attacks. A back row attack by sophomore right-side hitter Ashley Taylor ended set two at 25-12. The Pioneers ended the game in three sets with a final 25-17 win after Taylor took one final swing from the right side.

Outsider hitter Shiloh Simonson’s jump serve proved to be powerful, as the Celtics had difficulty receiving the serve and allowed Simonson to record six aces. Simonson’s runs allowed the Pioneers to hold a significant lead before the Celtics earned the ball back.

As the third set began, a new face stepped on the court bearing a white jersey instead of sophomore libero Morgan Dangelo. Dangelo racked up three assists, one ace and two digs in her two sets of play, but Bruno allowed Dangelo to rest for the third set, subbing in freshman Julia Menosky.

“She hit her head a little bit ago, so we just decided to pull her out on the side of caution,” Bruno said. Menosky did not disappoint as she helped her team to victory.

“I liked it,” Menosky said. “I never played a libero position before, so getting out there and getting my opportunity to play was great. I thought my serve receive was really good today. My defense could have been a little better picking up some balls, but overall I thought I did pretty good.”

As a defensive specialist, Menosky is no stranger to the back row. Statistics confirm seven digs and two assists for Menosky.

“I think, overall, we played pretty good as a team,” Menosky said. “I think Ashley [Taylor] had some killer swings.”

In fact, Taylor dominated the right side.

“I think I played [well],” Taylor said. “There were a couple plays I definitely could have done better, but I had all the focus there today.”

Taylor recorded the highest total kills of the night at ten, as well as four digs and two block assists. Simonson was next in line with eight kills, one assist, six aces and a team-high 12 digs.

Other contributors included Meng with 21 assists, four kills, one ace and eight digs, middle hitter Nikki Inquartano with two kills, one ace, four digs and four block assists, Madeline Poirier with four kills and five digs, Kirsten Burkes with one kill and three block assists and Juliana Ross with two assists, three aces and two digs.

Working together, the Pioneers sent the Celtics back home without a single set victory.

The Pioneers travel to Asbury (Ky.) this weekend for the River States Conference Tri-Match against Asbury and Cincinnati Christian.