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Volleyball struggles in ASUN loss to FGCU
Saturday, October 8, 2016
By Mark McGee
Volleyball struggles in ASUN loss to FGCU

NASHVILLE, Tenn. - The Lipscomb volleyball team got a wake-up call and they can’t afford to press the snooze alarm.

“I hate to have a wakeup call,” Rosenthal said. “I am not happy. We don’t plan for matches like this. We have to get up, dust ourselves off and go at it again.

“This hasn’t happened to us like this in a long time. But I can’t be concerned with the history. The hard part of being a part of this program is there is pressure to perform. But we all signed up for it and with that comes a responsibility.”

After winning three straight matches the Bisons lost 3-0 Saturday night to FGCU by set scores of 25-14, 25-18 and 25-18 to split the weekend of ASUN Conference competition at Allen Arena.

“You never want to get beat,” Rosenthal said. “And you never want to get beat like this. This has fueled my fire and hopefully it will fuel the fire in our players.”

“Some of it was Gulf Coast’s play. You can’t discount that. They beat us soundly and that is not easy for me to say. A lot of it is where we were at during the match. We have to get better moving forward. That is what we will do.”

Lipscomb is 10-6 overall, 3-2 in the ASUN. FGCU, which ended a 15-match winning streak with a 3-1 loss Friday night at Kennesaw State, is 17-3, 4-1 in the conference.

“I think Gulf Coast did a great job of coming out and executing their game plan,” Rosenthal said. “Everyone has to step up. I don’t think we played particularly well anywhere.

“Gulf Coast came in focused and prepared. Unfortunately, that created a lot of problems for us. The way we played is rather disheartening and disappointing as a coach.”

Outside hitter Carlyle Nusbaum led the Bisons with 13 kills and a .333 hitting percentage. She also added eight digs.

Right side Taylor Racich made 10 kills and hit .318 for the match.

FGCU’s Amanda Carroll had the match-high in kills with 15 and also led with a .500 hitting percentage.

Lipscomb libero Brittany Thomas was credited with 13 digs.

Courtney Stephens made a match-high 16 digs for FGCU.

Lipscomb setter Kayla Ostrom finished with 21 kills. Morgan Elmore added 11.

“There is a lot going on in my head from the standpoint of our focus and motivation,” Rosenthal said. “It is on us. It is on us as far as preparation and as far as execution.

“There is plenty to point to, but I don’t have the words. We are going to have bad days, but ultimately we have a responsibility and we didn’t live up to that responsibility. It is not something I am comfortable with.”

Rosenthal held a lengthy meeting with his team following the match. He is certain that the players will be talking about the situation among themselves.

“There will be some soul-searching,” Rosenthal said. “We have to understand the situation we are in. And the urgency we have right now is to not let this go any further.”

Quick Hitters:

  • The last time Lipscomb lost an ASUN match 3-0 was Nov. 9, 2012 to FGCU in Fort Myers. On Oct. 12, 2012 FGCU beat Lipscomb 3-0 at Allen Arena.
  • Nusbaum has been in double figures in kills in all 16 matches this season.
  • Thomas has finished in double figures in digs in 14 matches.
  • Racich has double figures in kills in 11 matches.
  • Nusbaum and Lauren Anderson combined for 17 digs.

Next up: The road gets tougher quickly for Lipscomb. The Bisons head north to Bowling Green Tuesday to face No. 25-ranked Western Kentucky at 7 p.m.