Grizzlies best South Dakota State

Saturday, the Oakland women’s volleyball team rebounded from last night’s loss to North Dakota State by beating South Dakota State in three sets.  OU, with the win, improves to 7-6 this season (2-2 Summit League).

Rob Beam, head coach said that his team is very difficult to beat when it is playing a balanced game offensively and defensively.

“It was good for us to come out and play with a lot of enthusiasm,” Beam said, “I just think that our ball control was sharper tonight and our defense was good.”

The Golden Grizzlies overcame a slow start to win the first set 25-18.  They managed to maintain this momentum to win the second set 25-18 and the third set 25-11.

Jenna Lange, senior, and Meghan Bray, junior led the team offensively with 11 kills each.  Bray also recorded a team leading 12 digs.

“It was really important (to get the win) because after last night’s loss we were really down,” Lange said, “It’s just really encouraging to come back after a loss like that and play well like we did tonight.”

Taylor Humm, freshman, made her first start tonight and made an all-around contribution with 10 kills and 12 digs.

Humm said that it meant the world to her for Beam to have confidence in her to let her start and play the entire match.

“After our loss yesterday, it was really tough on us and we needed to come back with strength and refutably with confidence,” Humm said, “For him to put that on me as a freshman is just incredible, so I really am thankful for this opportunity.”

Throughout the match, Beam often switched between Ashley Nevelle and Alissa Valentine at the setter position to constantly give South Dakota State different looks of the Grizzlies’ offense.

“The two-setter offense really allows us to take advantage of two of our best all-round volleyball players and utilizes them in ways that accentuates their own individual skills,” Beam said.

The Grizzlies will now prepare for a road trip next week as they face Southern Utah Thursday at 9pm, then face Oral Roberts Saturday at 8pm.

“That’s such a tough road trip, it’s four time zones in two days and really for us, it’s going to be about mental preparation,” Beam said.