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Volleyball drops Valley contest

Originally published October 22, 2010    

The women’s volleyball team extended its worst losing streak in four years last weekend.

The Braves lost in straight sets in two road matches to Indiana State and Illinois State to bring its losing streak to 14 games.

Bradley was defeated by Indiana State 25-13, 25-21, 25-23.

Sophomore Madelyn Ervin had a team-best eight kills and junior Genevieve Dejean added 13 digs.

Freshman Lauren Zerante said playing road conference games provides a unique challenge for the team.

“It’s always different playing on the road for conference because playing in another atmosphere forces us to adjust,” she said. “Sometimes the other team’s fans also add to a different environment that can make it challenging. It’s up to us to block out the things around us and focus on our play.”

Sophomore Shelly Mueller agreed that playing on the road is not an easy task for any team.

“A really tough crowd that has fans screaming against you makes it that much more challenging,” Mueller said. “Also adjusting to the gym floor and lights can be a challenge within itself.”

After falling to the Sycamores, the Braves traveled to Bloomington to face archrival Illinois State.

But the Braves again fell in straight sets 25-20, 25-14, 30-28. The loss dropped the team’s overall record to a disappointing 4-17 with a winless record of 0-9 in the conference.

Ervin again led the Braves with a match and season-high 13 kills. Junior Annie Cave and Freshman Amy Angelos each contributed nine kills.

Junior Rachelle Dejean led Bradley’s defensive effort with 14 digs.

Zerante and Mueller said they thought the team gave good effort all weekend.

“We fought hard the whole weekend so now we’re focusing on playing consistently well and decreasing our errors,” Zerante said.

“The team played well at times this weekend and we struggled at other times,” Mueller said. “When we played as a team we played extremely well.”

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