The Golden Eagles opened their season at home against the University of Tulsa on Sept. 15, with courts already warm from a previous tournament game played before featuring central Arkansas and opponent Wyoming (Central Arkansas took the l 3-1), as part of the ORU invitational.
Thousands came to watch, with dangling feet swung from the edges of the track down circling the court in the Aerobics Center. The air was competitive, both TU and ORU fans shared rows of bleachers.
ORU was leading in both kills and attacks the sets previous. The first and second set went to the Golden Hurricane, who received push back from the Golden Eagles in the third and fourth.
“First set we started pretty flat, we played well. Going into the second set, we lost the flow of the game. There were a couple times where we couldn’t adjust,” said Head Coach Sheera Sirola “We did readjust our line up and we did great the next two sets into the fifth.”
Laura Milos took 32 kills throughout the night, taking her personal ORU career record up to 1,9000 in total. Sophomore CeCe Madison took a personal best with 21 digs, and setters Bria Bergman and Lucija Boianiac both added more than 30 assists to the team.
Sirola believes although the win went to Tulsa, the team dynamic’s shown on Friday are an accurate representation of who the 2017-2018 team really is.
“There is chemistry [in] the way we play and move, they communicate so well with each other. I think its great, the energy is there but we need the mental toughness to get us over the humps,” said Sirola.
The Golden Eagles now sit 3-9, after experience three loses throughout the tournament. Hitting an average of .197, with almost 13 kills per set.
“We didn’t get mentally tough at the end; we need to push through that,” said Sirola regarding the loss.
The team’s first conference game kicks off this Friday, against Fort Wayne, here at the Aerobics Center at 7 p.m. Followed by a second conference match against Western Illinois on Sunday at 1 p.m.