Pittsburg State fifth-year senior Linda Igbinigie had some extra motivation coming into the Gorillas’ battle with No. 11 Truman State Saturday night.

Pittsburg State fifth-year senior Linda Igbinigie had some extra motivation coming into the Gorillas’ battle with No. 11 Truman State Saturday night.
Two years ago, the student newspaper at Truman labeled Igbinigie as a player that the Bulldogs could beat and that she was outplayed when Truman beat the Gorillas two years ago.
Igbinigie slammed, literally and figuratively, it right back in the face of Truman as she had no errors in the Gorillas’ 3-1 (25-23, 25-14, 21-25, 25-16) win over Truman at John Lance Arena Saturday.
“Since they wrote that, I decided that today was the day I was going to take it to them,” Igbinigie said.
The Richardson, Texas senior had 15 kills and had an attack percentage of .625 against Truman — who had not lost to Pitt State since 2005 and owned a 38-3 record against the Gorillas all-time.
The win was made sweeter since the Gorillas fell to Central Missouri last weekend at home in an effort that PSU head coach Ibraheem Suberu called “nonexistent.”
“We talk about team effort and consistency,” Suberu said. “Our team members matured a lot today.”
Senior Sammie Williams led the Gorillas (15-3, 4-2 MIAA) with 19 kills and Pamela Cartagena added 16 kills for the Gorillas.
“They had outstanding leadership,” Suberu said.
Senior setter Emily Vosseler chipped in 36 sets for PSU.
“It was an amazing feeling,” Vosseler said of the win Saturday. “We came out today and wanted to win.”
For the Bulldogs (13-5, 4-2 MIAA), they had just one player — Eli Medina — with double-digit kills (14).
“They (PSU) just played better,” said Truman head coach Jason Skoch. “I told our team that it was embarrassing ... it is simple, they wanted it more and we didn’t.”
The Gorillas took the first two games in convincing fashion and Truman was able to come back and take the third game.
In the final game of the match, Pitt State took control and never relinquished their lead.
“You can’t be on your heels and not make adjustments to come back,” Skoch said. “We have to start from scratch and some people may have lost their spots tonight.”
But the night belonged to Igbinigie has she utilized the quick set to pound home her message of not being intimidated.
“This puts a whole new fire into us,” Igbinigie said. “We could not go to Nationals because of them and that roadblock is gone.”
It also seemed to erase a tough start to the MIAA schedule for the Gorillas.
“We had a rough start but now is a good way to begin the rest of the season,” Vosseler said.
The Gorillas will host the six-team Pittsburg State Classic beginning Oct. 3 at John Lance Arena.

Matthew Clark can be reached at matthew.clark@morningsun.net or at 620-231-2600, Ext. 140