AMHERST, NY- The Lake Erie Storm volleyball team has started their 2018 season on a positive note with a record of 2-1 at the Daemen Volleyball Classic presented by Millennium Buffalo. The three-match tournament included competition for the Storm against Gannon University (L), Daemen College (W), and St. Rose (W).
The Storm opened 2018 with a 3-1 loss to Gannon. Gannon was ranked 13th, and made it to the National Semifinals in 2017. They won the first set over the Golden Knights 29-27, then dropped the next three sets with a score of 25-19. Hailey Neilsen finished with 10 kills. Courtney Rosebrook (8) and senior Crystal Kendroske (7) also contributed to the team's 31 kills against Gannon. Kendroske led the Storm defense with 12 digs, and Morgan Briggs and Tashelle Peigan both chipped in with 11. Paige Allen also helped out on defense for the Storm with 2 blocks.
The middle match for Storm volleyball against Daemen College was the first win for head coach Kyle Peck, and for the Storm in 2018. They swept the Wildcats 25-17, 25-10, and 25-22. Nielsen had 19 kills which contributed to the team effort of 49 kills against the Wildcats. On defense, Briggs had 17 digs, followed by seniors Kendroske (15) and Alexis Thomas (12).
Lake Erie volleyball concluded the tournament against St. Rose in a 4 set match. They dropped the first set 26-24, then won the next three sets 25-20, 25-21, and 25-22. Nielsen led the Storm for the third time on offense with 19 kills. On defense, the Storm finished the match with 79 digs, 20 of which were Kendroske's.
Head coach Kyle Peck said, ""We faced some tough opponents this weekend. We really learned what kind of team we are, and what we need to do in order to win. All 3 teams we played were significantly taller than we are, so we really have to take advantage of our point-scoring opportunities"
Senior Alexis Thomas and junior Hailey Neilsen were the two Storm student-athletes named to the All-Tournament team.
Storm volleyball heads to IUP on Friday, September 31 for their next series of matches.