Needing to pull out one victory in their final two Midwest Conference games to make the tournament, the Lawrence women’s volleyball team fell short, losing to the Beloit College Buccaneers 3-2 (25-19, 25-21, 22-25, 16-25, 11-15) and the Lake Forest College Foresters 3-0 (19-25, 16-25, 15-25).
The Vikings did end the season on a high note in their final game defeating the Alverno College Inferno 3-0 (25-15, 25-18, 25-16). The Vikings end the season with an overall record of 13-19 and a 5-4 record in MWC play.
After building a 2-0 lead at Beloit and needing to win one more set, the Buccaneers roared back to take the match. Beloit scored three straight points in the third match to seal it and handled the Vikings in the fourth set. In the fifth set, Lawrence rallied from a 6-1 deficit to shorten Beloit’s lead to 13-11.
However, the Bucs scored the final two points to seal the deal. Statistical leaders for the Vikings were senior Clare Bohrer contributing 14 kills, junior Emma Kane added 12 kills and junior Shannon McLain had 11 kills.
In a must-win situation, Lake Forest handled the Vikings in three sets. Statistical leaders for the Vikings were Bohrer and McLain with six kills each. Later in the day, Lawrence was able to end the season with a victory over Alverno College. Bohrer had 10 kills, freshman Kayla Storm had eight kills and McLain added seven kills. Sophomore Brielle Bartes contributed a career-high 35 assists and sophomore Kathleen Rowland added 27 digs.
With the season over, junior Jenna Picha reflected, “The season started out looking very promising. This was definitely the best team LU volleyball has had in a while. We had some impressive wins and some disappointing losses. Even though we ended the season without fulfilling our goal of making the conference tournament, the returners plan to work even harder for next year.”
With every team comes seniors who play their last collegiate game. Senior Sam Nimmer, looking back on her career, commented, “One word that I would use to describe these past four years is progress. My freshman year we won three games, and I never thought that by my senior year we would have a legitimate chance to make the conference tournament. The girls on the team are some of my best friends, and I know they are committed to making next year even more successful!”