Broncs drop two of three in Lehigh Tournament

By Luke Lombardi

The Rider women’s volleyball team completed their second preseason invitational on Sept. 2 and 3 in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. 

Due to the Broncs losing multiple players, including record breaking setter Anilee Sher, there were many concerns coming into the season, including finding a new setter.

“Right now, we’re just trying to fine-tune a couple of things with both Julia [Slivka] and Sydney [Bond]. They’re doing a very good job. They have some very big shoes to fill, and right now we’re not really sure if we’re going to run a one setter offense or a two setter offense,” said Head Coach Jeff Rotondo.

The weekend was off to a rocky start  for Rider when they fell to Buffalo 3-0. After facing multiple top 30 teams the weekend before, the team might have taken their foot off the gas. 

“We played big teams in the BYU tournament and we did finish really strong,” said senior opposite Morgan Romano. “We had a good game against Duke the last day that we were there. I think we finished strong there, but then going into this weekend, I think we let up a little bit. We weren’t playing ranked teams, so I think we kind of let ourselves get down, and we didn’t play up to our expectations and potential of ourselves that we have.”

The following match ended up being the highlight of the season for the Broncs so far when they defeated Cleveland State 3-1 for their first victory of the season. Junior outside hitter Jenna Amaro led the team with 13 kills, and senior libero Pamela Loh led the way on defense with 16 digs.

The final game of the tournament was against the host in Lehigh. This game was the most exciting of the weekend, as it went five sets with the Broncs falling 3-2. Rider started off strong, winning set one 25-20 while coming back from a 15-10 deficit at one point. The following set went just as well for the team with a 25-21 victory. 

From there, the team fell apart. Lehigh took set three 25-10. Rider made set five competitive, but they came up just short, losing the deciding set 15-12.

Even though the team earned its first win, Rotundo was disappointed in how the weekend went. Rotundo said, “I think we would like to have this weekend back, if I’m going to be brutally honest. We were not happy with the Buffalo match. We thought that was a match that we should compete a lot better in, and we just did not show up, and, talking to the team, shame on them because we talked about it. We said ‘Guys, just because we played three of the top 65 programs in the country last weekend doesn’t mean that we can walk into this tournament and feel like we have things figured out.’”

The Broncs look to close this pre-season with a bang, as they participate in their last pre-season tournament when they travel to Washington, face Georgetown, George Washington and Binghamton on Sept. 9 and 10.

Show More

Related Articles

Back to top button