Shockers battle Missouri State, fall 2-1 in MVC

Wichita State played in a losing effort against the Missouri State Bears on Friday. The Shockers lost 4-1.

The result was the Shockers moving to 11-6 on the season and 2-1 in Missouri Valley with scores of 20-25, 25-22, 27-25 and 25-22, and dropping to fifth place in the MVC.

The Shockers started the night on top, clenching the first set by five. With an early jump followed by a Bears rally and lead change, the team was able to pull ahead and closed the set on a kill from Abbie Lehman.

“The first game they made a lot of little errors and then they cleaned it up after that,” said senior Katie Reilly at the post game press conference. “We started making those errors but didn’t clean up after the first set. They picked up balls that we didn’t.”

In the second game, WSU’s defense struggled against the Bears at the beginning and end of the match, and the team was unable to finish with a win. Although WSU hit a higher percentage this match, MSU excelled in blocks and service aces.

“It’s tough when you have it and then you lose,” Reilly said. “You can’t just assume that you’ll win the game. You have to wait until the ball hits the ground. Missouri State did well.”  

The third set of the night was an all-out battle. With 12 ties and seven lead-changes, Missouri State defeated WSU with the help of offensive threat Lily Johnson and errors from WSU.

“We still aren’t all the way there in the back row,” head coach Chris Lamb said. “We’ve got bigs playing back there, as well as girls who have only been playing back there this past week in practice, so I felt like they (Missouri State) were a more organized, comfortable group.”

Freshman Shimen Fayad led in kills during the final set, but the Shockers were out hit .244 to .267 percent.

Fayad was a big asset, leading the match in kills with 20 on the night, while setter Emily Hiebert garnered 51 assists.

“We are still in the beginning stages of this new lineup with a lot of moving parts and have still been working on figuring out who we are,” Lamb said.

Wichita State plays at 7 p.m. Monay against No. 9 Evansville in Evansville, Indiana.