The Portland State Vikings hosted the Eastern Washington Eagles at the Peter W. Stott Center on Friday night, hoping to end their losing streak. Unfortunately, the nationally ranked Eastern Washington proved to be a tough opponent.
The Eagles dominated from the beginning of the first game, never letting the Vikings come within more than seven points of their lead of 28-21 in the set. They went on to win the first game 30-21.
PSU seemed determined to come back in the next game, starting out strong with a 5-3 lead. The Eagles soon fought their way back, taking the 20-9 advantage midway through the game. The Vikings were able to pull within five at 27-22 but would lose the second straight set 30-22.
Game three was close early on with the Vikings and Eagles tied at 6-6. Though Eastern Washington soon pulled away, PSU was able to follow relatively close behind for most of the game. A powerful run late in the set allowed Eastern Washington to sweep the Vikings with a score of 30-17. It was the fifth straight loss of the season for PSU.
Eastern Washington was led by three players posting double-digit kill totals: Monica Lynch (15), Janelle Ruen (11) and Lindsay Page (10). Setter Jessie Wright helped out with 25 assists, while Andrea Verdoljak dominated defensively with 12 digs.
Despite their loss, the Vikings also turned in some impressive individual performances. Richell Wilson and Katie Kost scored respective double-digit kill totals of 15 and 13 respectively, while Stephanie Lavinge chipped in with 36 assists. Kristin Ratzlaff contributed 17 digs to the defensive effort.
Tonight, the Vikings will host the University of Portland at the Stott Center at 7 p.m., the second game of the “River City Rivalry.” The Vikings were victorious in their first match-up against U of P, beating them in three out of five games in August at the Nike Pilot Preview Tournament. A win this week against a rival Portland team may be just what the Vikings need to pull them out of their current slump.