Heading into the second week of October the Eastern Michigan University volleyball team found itself in the middle of the pack in the West division of the Mid-American Conference and would remain there following two losses this week.
With matchups against cross state rival Central Michigan and Ohio, the Eagles were poised to boost their standing within the division. However, with the two losses the Eagles now find themselves located in the bottom three teams in the division while being two games below .500 in the MAC.
The Eagles engaged in a battle at Mount Pleasant on Thursday evening, Oct. 6. Despite strong offensive outputs from sophomore Jordan Smith, 13 kills, senior Devon Murray, 10 kills, and senior Riley Taylor, who delivered her third straight game with over 20 assists, setting her team up 33 times in this match, the Eagles still ended up on the losing side. The Eagles dropped the first set 22-25 but quickly bounced back to take the next two sets 25-15 and 25-22. Although the Eagles only needed one more set to claim the victory Central Michigan battled back to take the last two sets 17-25 and 8-15.
The Eastern Michigan volleyball team would have little time to reconcile with another road trip coming up Saturday, Oct. 8 with the Ohio Bobcats. Yet again the Eagles were defeated, again in five sets, however they produced two career high performances. Freshman Rachel Irbe lead the way in kills for the team, tallying up a total of 18. Riley Taylor, while continuing her streak of 4 consecutive 20 or more assist games, dropped in an astonishing 50 assists in the match. Similar to the match with Central earlier in the week the Eagles would find themselves dropping the first set, 18-25, winning the next two, 25-23 25-22, and then ultimately dropping the the final two sets, 19-25 8-15.
The Eagles end the week with a 2-4 record in MAC conference play but will be at home for the next two matches. With matches against Bowling Green and Miami who are both playing exceptionally well this year the Eagles will need to shift into a higher gear to get themselves back to a .500 record in conference play. Bowling Green makes their way into Ypsilanti on Oct. 14, at 7pm and the University of Miami Ohio will be visiting the following day, Oct. 15, at 5pm.