Joseph Lillard / Staff Writer
Despite falling at Gannon University, 3-1, the Golden Eagle volleyball team took care of business, defeating Mercyhurst University (3-0) and Indiana University of Pennsylvania (3-1).
Coming off the heels of a hard-fought battle against Juniata College, Clarion set its sights on the struggling Mercyhurst squad.
Clarion made short work of its opponents, 27-25, 25-13 and 25-16, respectively.
Taylor Braunagel paced the Golden Eagles with 11 kills and two aces.
Olivia Olsen collected seven kills and six blocks for the victors.
Julia Holden rounded-out the performance with seven kills and two aces of her own.
Shortly after the set, Clarion high-tailed it to Erie for a showdown against the Golden Knights.
It was a tough competition between some of the hottest teams in the Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference (PSAC).
Clarion took the first set, 25-19, but dropped the next three games by scores of 25-17, 25-15 and 25-16, respectively.
Holden gather 12 kills in the contest, while Braunagel claimed an all-around statline with nine kills, four assists and two aces.
On Wednesday, Oct. 10, Clarion opened a series of home sets against IUP.
Clarion jumped out to an early advantage in the matchup, snatching the first set, 25-20.
IUP responded by capturing the second game, but the Golden Eagles slammed the door shut by claiming the third and fourth sets, 25-20 and 25-19, respectively.
Clarion’s Holden led all players with 19 kills, accompanied by one ace.
Braunagel contributed 10 kills, two blocks and an ace of her own to the Eagles.
Kaitlyn Glaser posted seven kills and seven blocks for the win.
The volleyball team seems more focused now than ever before.
Taylor Braunagel commented on this.
“Coming off of the loss to Gannon really set a fire in us. We knew that we would have to make some changes against IUP, and after making them and being successful with the adverse situation we are in, I think that we are only more inspired to win for our Breast Cancer weekend!”
After the IUP matchup, Clarion stands with a record of 14-6 overall and 5-2 in the conference.
With such a successful record, one would assume that the team has its eyes on the playoffs.
While the idea of the postseason may be somewhere in the players’ minds, Braunagel says, “We try to focus on one game at a time. We have a saying that we’ve been saying often this season: Bite by Bite. We try to focus on the next step and the process of getting better one bite at a time. That’s how you eat an elephant!”
Clarion stays at home for its next few contests.
Slippery Rock University arrives on Oct. 13 for a game at 7 p.m.
Edinboro rounds out the home games. on Oct. 14.