CSE entered their 18th match of the season looking to get back to .500 versus the Lions of Bryn Athyn but despite holding a 2-1 set lead, the Eagles could not finish the task at hand and lost a tough 5 set match 20-25, 25-18, 25-23, 20-25, 5-15.
The Eagles are still playing without starting setter and captain Amy Cooper and are now missing starting OH, freshman Nicole Morera. Kiana Cunningham made her return after 3 weeks on injured reserve to help boost the Eagles who had to start the match without backup setter Cheyenne Grant so the setting duties fell to Katie Cooper.
Although the Eagles lost the set 20-25, the team felt very good about the way they played as the team pounded out 10 kills out of 27 attempts for a .259 hitting %. The team was also flawless from the service line going a perfect 21 for 21 with 2 aces. Kareemah Muhammad and Subhana Wrights combined for 9 kills to lead the Eagles.
In the following set, CSE was down 6-9 early but a kill by Wrights and Cunningham led to a 3-0 run that tied up the score at 9. Down 9-11, CSE goes on a 5-0 run to push the lead to 14-11 behind kills by Ireyah Stevens and Cooper and a block by Cunningham. With the score knotted up at 14, Stevens had a thunderous block that gave the Eagles a lead they would not relinquish as the block sparked a 5-0 run the saw Stevens have another block and Cunningham hit for an ace. At 19-14, the Eagles never looked back and finished off the set 25-18 after a Wrights block and 3 consecutive Lion errors.
The third set was a close battle form the start but after an ace by Wrights and a Lion attack error, the Eagles had a 10-7 lead. CSE maintained this 3 point lead through most of the set as the Eagles held on to a 21-18 lead after a Muhammad passing error. After Bryn Athyn closed to within 2 at 22-20, a kill by Cooper and an ace by Grant extended the lead to 24-20 and the Eagles looked to be poised to take the 3rd set. Two consecutive kills by the Lions had the Eagles up by a mere point at 24-23 but after a timeout, a perfect pass by Cooper and assist by Grant had Wrights pound out the final point at 25-23.
The 4th set proved to be the Eagles' undoing as the team got out to slow start, trailing the Lions 8-1 early on. The Eagles went on a 12-5 run that had the teams tied at 13 after a Taisha Colon ace but the Lions responded with a 4-0 run that propelled them to an 18-14 lead. CSE fought back to within 1 at 17-18 after kills by Muhammad and Grant but the Lions regained control and had a 6-1 run that sealed the fate of the Eagles as a service error by CSE ended the 4th set 20-25.
CSE seemed to run out answers in the last set as the Lions jumped out to an 8-2 lead and atypical CSE miscues cost the team opportunities to keep the Eagles in the match. CSE bowed out at 5-15 and hit negative for the set although the Eagles hit an impressive .209 for the match, unofficially.
Cooper led all Eagles with 12 kills and added 13 assists while being a perfect 36 of 36 on serve receive and led CSE with 15 digs. Wrights tallied 11 kills and 4 aces while adding 3 solo blocks. Stevens led the Eagles with 4 solo blocks and tacked on 2 kills. Muhammad led all Eagles with a .412 hitting % on 9 kills and Cunningham added 6 kills, 1 block, 2 aces and 11 digs in her return.
CSE drops to 8W-10L and is in the midst of a 3 game losing streak as the squad heads to PS Berks this weekend to face conference foes Gallaudet, PS Abington, Lancaster Bible and PS Berks.