Oct. 3, 2010
CULLOWHEE, N.C. - Senior Paloma Alvarez and sophomore Amanda Chaparro combined for 33 kills, but it wasn't enough to overcome and early two-set deficit as the Catamounts were defeated, 3-1, by Elon on Sunday afternoon at the Ramsey Center.
"I am disappointed with the way we started the match," said Concepcion. "We need to start playing hungrier from the beginning of the matches. We are fighting back from being down in sets and it's impressive that our team is battling and not conforming to losing like in the past."
Chaparro's 17 kills was a match-high followed by Alvarez's 16. Junior Carrie Minogue add 10 kills with a .556 attacking percentage while also contributing four blocks (one solo block, three block assists) on the afternoon.
"Carrie did an amazing job," said Concepcion. "She was all of the net offensively and defensively. Amanda Chaparro also had a great outing for us this afternoon."
Freshman Kelcie Randazzo posted a match-high 28 assists while teammate Emily Franklin added 21. The Catamounts (6-13, 1-3 SoCon) recorded two more assists (52-50) in the match than the Phoenix (11-9, 3-1 SoCon).
Defensively, four WCU players recorded 11 or more digs. Freshman Morgan Cochran paced the group with a match-high 21 digs followed by Alvaraz and Chaparro who both had 12 digs and Randazzo who posted 11 digs. Randazzo recorded her third consecutive double-double, her eighth of the season.
"We had four girls in double figures in the digs column and we are keeping our errors down," said Concepcion. "Overall, it's a huge improvement from where we were at the beginning of the season."
WCU trailed by five to open the first set (7-2) before rattling off six straight points to take an 8-7 lead and force an Elon timeout. The Phoenix responded by using a 10-4 run to regain the lead, 17-12. An Elon error followed by a Chaparro service ace and a Rebecca Stoltz kill got the Catamounts back within two (17-15), but the Phoenix went on a 4-2 run to make the score 21-17. Three consecutive WCU points made the score 21-20 before Elon used a trio of kills and a Catamount miscue to win the set 25-22.
Set two saw WCU trail 15-5 before scoring four straight points to get the match within six (15-9). The Catamounts were only outscored, 10-7, throughout the remainder of the set, but the early deficit proved costly as WCU dropped the set, 25-16.
The Catamounts battled back in set three, jumping out to a 15-10 lead midway through the set. Elon went on a 3-1 run to get within three (16-13), but three consecutive kills by Chaparro pushed the WCU advantage to six (19-13) and force the Phoenix to burn a timeout. The two teams exchanged points evenly the remainder of the set (6-6) as WCU went on to win the set 25-19.
WCU opened the fourth set with a 9-3 lead and led by as much has seven (17-10) down the stretch before Elon used a 7-2 run to get within two (19-17). After a Leah Best kill made the score 20-17, the Phoenix used an 8-3 run to win the match.
"I am happy with how we finished, our girls picked up their game," said Concepcion."We are losing matches, but are playing well. We are giving a lot of trouble to our opponent with our offense and defense."
WCU plays its next four matches on the road, facing Samford on Friday, Oct. 8 at 8 p.m. to open the road swing.