SIU Volleyball Enjoying Historic Season

SIU Volleyball Enjoying Historic Season

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By WSIL Sports

SIU's volleyball team rolled to 21 wins a season ago, but the Salukis suffered an early exit from the conference tournament due to a round one loss.

Four players graduated from that squad and 11 new faces arrived in 2013. But this team has gained momentum as the season has progressed and are currently tied for third in the Missouri Valley Conference.

"Anytime you get 11 newcomers coming into a program there are going to have to be some adjustments that are going to have to happen throughout the beginning portion of the season," said SIU volleyball head coach Justin Ingram. "Really, that is what happened and it took awhile to catch stride."

"We started off a little rough but we've progressed like none other and we are beating the top teams and it feels really good," said SIU senior outside hitter Elly Braaten.

The Salukis continue to grow as a team and as a result they have claimed four signature wins this season.

They picked up their first win in Springfield, Missouri since 1998. They beat Northern Iowa at home for the first time since 1993. They snagged their first win against Wichita State since 2002, and they beat Northern Iowa in Cedar Falls for the first time since 1985.

"It is hard to even describe that feeling," said SIU outside hitter Emily Less. "We went in wanting to beat them because we had already beat them at home but to win at their place was just an awesome feeling."

"It was fun when Elly got that last kill and we were all so excited to beat them at their place," said SIU senior outside hitter Jessica Whitehead.

SIU is currently on a three game winning streak. The Salukis hope to carry that momentum into their final three regular season games at home.

If the Salukis are able to make the Conference Tournament, they will look to claim their first Missouri Valley Conference Title since 1985.

SIU begins its quest to make more history this Friday against Evansville. The game is set to begin at 7:00 at Davies Gym.
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