By Chad Robert Snyder
Pilot staff writer
The Lady Bruins lost a back-and-forth battle to the Siuslaw Vikings in four sets on Tuesday in the CFCU Pavilion; 23-25, 25- 23, 11-25,19-25.
The Bruins started the match already at a disadvantage with their everyday lebaro, Breanne Manley, lost for the game due to illness.
The girls started the first set with strong efforts from all the team members and quickly tallied up a 5-1 lead. The Vikings responded quickly, however, with their net game, and fought back to a tie at 8-8. For the next 20 points the team continually traded ties until 19-19, when Siuslaw took the lead and didn't relinquish it, ultimately taking the set 25-23.
The second set was more of the same in the first few points. Unlike the first set, the Bruins held a lead until a rush of Viking scoring to take the score to 19-19. The teams again traded ties, until Taylor Keys crushed a left-handed spike to make the score 22-21. At that point Nicole Watterson took over, killing two of the last three points, including matchpoint.
The third set was in stark contrast to all the other sets in the game.
"I don't know, it was the emotion of the win in the second, I think we just lost focus," said Bruin Head Coach Lori Cooper.
The Viking rushed out to a 10-0 lead and hardly let up, winning the set 11-25.
The Bruins remerged in the fourth set, after the disappointing loss in the third. The set was a fast, physical confrontation in which the Bruins kept it close the entire way, only to drop the final three points and the game.
Cooper said the entire team played well, especially Felicia Gutierrez, who stepped in for the absent Manley. She had 31 digs in the contest and made a number of stunning saves.
Cooper said she was pleased with several other performances including Danielle Ambrose's 12 assists, Nicole Watterson's 5 kills and 9 blocks, and Briana Gutierrez's 5 saves and 12 assists.
The JV had a successful night, defeating the vikings in three sets; 25-13, 24-26, 15-12.
Assistant Head Coach Pat Berkowitz said the performance shows how far the JV have come as a team.
"We showed a lot of development in beating a team that had previously beaten us and that we got down to in the third set," he said.
The JV Bruins scored six of the last eight point to take the third set and the game.
Berkowitz said he was extremely pleased with performance of Sarah Pate, who scored the last two points of the third set, and Brianna Juarez, who had two service aces.