The Fredonia State volleyball team faced off against Nazareth for the third time in 11 days and finally came through with a convincing 3-1 victory. Up two sets to one, the Devils dominated the fourth set, 25-12, to claim their home opener.
The teams split the first two sets, Fredonia State winning the first, 25-17, and Nazareth claimed the second, 20-25. After taking the third set, 25-17, the Devils got on a roll dominating the fourth set as Lauren Hokaj totaled six service aces final frame.
"It's not normal," Fredonia State coach Geoff Braun said of playing a team three times in 11 days. "We have been improving a lot, but playing a tough schedule. Tonight was a great confidence booster for the girls."
As a team, the Devils had 19 service aces. Kelly Edinger had five and Kaitlin Orcutt had four.
Offensively, Paulina Rein had nine kills, Orcutt had eight and Lindsey Olson had seven. Edinger collected 29 assists.
Hokaj added 13 digs and Rein had 12.
For the young Devils, the victory showed steady progress. They lost to Nazareth on Sept. 1, 3-0, and on Sept. 7, 3-2. The Devils' roster features nine freshmen.
The Devils (2-7) travel to the Hilbert Invitational this weekend.
Road loss to Naz precedes western trip
ROCHESTER - Fredonia State men's soccer team fell to 0-6 with an 3-1 road loss Tuesday at the Nazareth Golden Flyers.
The Blue Devils allowed three first-half goals before finally breaking through in the 72nd minute. Freshman midfielder Patrick Schuber scored his second goal of the season, assisted by junior defender Jake Persons.
"We started great," Fredonia State coach P.J. Gondek said. "We had some great scoring chances. We had them and then we gave up a soft goal and lost our heads for a 20-minute span. We are suffering from confidence issues. We were pretty disappointed at half and did some soul searching. We outplayed them in the second half, but when you're down by three, it doesn't give you much of a chance to come back."
Each team hit a post in the first half. The Blue Devils' near-goal came on a shot by senior Akwasi Owusu in the 13th minute.
Fredonia State sophomore goalkeeper A.J. Grecco started and made three saves in the first half. He was relieved by sophomore Mike Schreiner, who made three saves over the final 45 minutes. The Blue Devils work outshot Nazareth, 21-10 overall.
"We did some really good things, but we did some really bad things," Gondek said. "Until we can play a complete game, we are going to find ourselves on the losing end. We have to get our seniors to play well and drag the younger players with them. I'm not down on the players we have. I think we have really good players. We just aren't getting it right now. We aren't getting the focus from the first minute to the 90th minute. When we let up on the game, the game turns quickly."
Nazareth improved to 4-0 with the non-conference win.
Fredonia State heads out west for its next two games. The Blue Devils travel to Colorado Springs, Col., where they will meet host Colorado College at 4:30 p.m. Friday and Otterbein at 2 p.m. Saturday.
"We definitely need a win," Gondek said. "I hope this experience is just what the doctor ordered and we will go from there."