JBU advances to 20-3 after Region Challenge

Siloam Springs, Ark. (September 26, 2004) — The Golden Eagles won four of their six matches in the Region Challenge in West Texas this weekend. JBU began the tournament on Thursday with a disappointing loss to Lubbock Christian University in five games (30-28, 23-30, 22-30, 31-29, 9-15). Even though JBU began the match with confidence and aggressiveness, they allowed LCU to come back and control the match. Head Coach Robyn Gordon said, “We were definitely disappointed after our opening five game loss to Lubbock Christian. We didn't play well and we let them control the tempo of the match. We are looking forward to them coming up to Siloam Springs at the end of October for a rematch." Immediately following their loss to LCU, the Golden Eagles defeated the University of Texas at Permian Basin in four games (30-20, 17-30, 30-15, 30-19). The Golden Eagles displayed impressive mental and physical perseverance by playing nine games in a row. JBU broke down momentarily in the second game against UTPB, but they were able to recover and finish the match well. The Golden Eagles faced Houston Baptist University in their first match on Friday. Even though JBU lost in four games (27-30, 30-32, 30-24, 28-30), each game was intense and competitive. After the tournament, Coach Gordon said, “Our best match was definitely against Houston Baptist, who is currently ranked 9th in the nation. We played very aggressive against them and were able to frustrate them and cause them to make some errors. They are a very powerful team, with a front line of 6'3", 6'1" and 6'0. I was proud of the way we played physically and mentally." The Golden Eagles defeated Huston-Tillotson College in their second match on Friday in three games (30-20, 30-12, 30-21). JBU was able to utilize their younger players and give them some valuable game experience. The Golden Eagles finished the tournament on Saturday by defeating Wayland Baptist University in three games (30-18, 30-20, 30-13) and College of the Southwest in three games (30-27, 30-13, 30-17). Looking back on the tournament as a whole, Coach Gordon said, “It was a great weekend overall and it was good to see us be able to play fatigued. We played 6 matches in 3 days, with back-to-back matches on two of the three days. All of the girls responded well and that is critical for our success. We do not want to rely on one player to carry us. We have talked about the importance of team play since preseason, and we are seeing the results of that." Team leaders for the tournament included Senior Helen Gross with 72 kills, 14 blocks, and 6 aces; Senior Meghann Wharton with 67 kills and 29 blocks; Sophomore Juliana Todescan with 241 assists, 15 aces, and 17 blocks; Sophomore Tatiane Silva with 66 kills, 7 aces, 11 blocks, and 96% Serve Receive, Junior Elisa Evans with 53 kills and 18 blocks, and Junior Christine Wells with 115 digs, 7 aces, and 96% Serve Receive.