The Gorillas started Friday night’s matchup against visiting Missouri Western with a ceremony honoring senior Kelley Bugler. Bugler transferred to Pittsburg State after playing Division I volleyball at Marshall University.

The Gorillas started Friday night’s matchup against visiting Missouri Western with a ceremony honoring senior Kelley Bugler. Bugler transferred to Pittsburg State after playing Division I volleyball at Marshall University.

The Gorillas saw hard attacks by Missouri Western in the first set, and had trouble covering the block. Defensive specialist Christa McCaw found her rhythm and was able to dig up the Missouri Western hits so the rest of the Gorillas could make aggressive plays. McCaw led with 20 digs for the night. Pitt State won the first set 25-20.

Pitt State started off rough in the second set, as they didn’t have the same momentum that was shown in the first. The Gorillas faced attack errors and service errors, losing the set 19-25.

The Gorillas came back in the third with renewed spirits, allowing MIssouri Western to lead only once early in the set. Pitt State had their biggest lead at 18-12, where the Griffons squeaked out a few points from Gorilla errors. Pitt State took the third set 25-20.

The Gorillas were on fire in the final set, taking the victory with style. Missouri Western could not find their away around the block, and were shut down nearly every time at the net.

“Our blocking stepped up a lot at the end of the game,” sophomore setter Rebecca Pearson said. “Every position played balanced.”
When the ball was deflected off the block into Gorilla territory, McCaw was there once again to make a pass.

Freshman Morgan Voorhees had a stellar night, with 21 kills against the Griffons.

“Morgan definitely stepped up this game,” Pearson said. “She did great.”

Junior Leah Flynn led the Gorillas with 25 kills, and three kills in a row in the final set.

“All of our attackers were taking the windows and the alleys and without getting blocked.” Pearson said.
The Gorillas ended the third set 25-17.

Pearson also said Friday night’s game helps motivate the Gorillas for the spring and next year’s season.

“Coming off the season high is great because we’re going to have to wait a whole nother year to play a different season,” Pearson said. “If we can come off strong off of this season and bring it into the spring, and then travel to Europe this summer and focus there, and bring that into next year it will be great.”

In the meantime, the Gorillas must focus on today’s home game against Truman State, which will be at 6 p.m. instead of the usual 7 p.m. time.

In regard to facing Truman State, Pearson said, “If everyone can just stay balanced and do their job, then (it) should be an easy game.”