Lady Buccaneers get past Western

By Seth Bartee
STAR Correspondent

   The ETSU Lady Bucs rose from the dead Tuesday evening at Brooks Gym as they beat Western Carolina three games to two after being down going into the fourth.
   Now the Lady Bucs (7-19, 5-10 SoCon) are tied with the Lady Catamounts (13-14, 5-8 SoCon) for fourth place in the North Division of the Southern Conference. Fourth place is enough to get a team in the Southern Conference Championships set for Nov. 21-23.
   The Lady Bucs mounted their comeback in game four after being down two games to one. Led by a plethora of help, especially senior Lissa Allen, ETSU held the Catamounts at bay with defensive plays and hit kills when they were most needed.
   Allen led the Bucs with 20 kills.
   Then the Catamounts scored six straight points to lead game four 15-9, but the Bucs roared back after being as many as seven points down to score five points in a row and make the score 22-20. The game was then tied after lead changes at 29 apiece when freshman Lauren Madzia made a block to bring ETSU back to life 31-31.
   Eventually the Bucs pulled it out 39-37, led by hard kills and digs by junior Karen Freeburg. Freeburg finished the night with 14 kills and 23 digs total.
   "This kind of game is going to help us as we play other games at the end of the season," said ETSU's Kate Steidle. "Our momentum just carries from game to game and we play with a lot of heart."
   In the final game, the Lady Bucs showed that they were in charge early. They led early in game five 8-3 before disposing of Western Carolina 15-11 on a Steidle kill. They won the match three games to two setting themselves up for postseason play.
   "We did not play well," said Angell Benson, WCU head coach. "ETSU definitely played better than they did when we faced them last time."
   Coach Lindsey Devine was upbeat and all smiles after their win. When asked if she felt like they got redemption after a tough Furman loss a couple of weeks ago she said, yes.
   "Now the girls know what its like to win in five games instead of losing in five," said Devine after the Lady Bucs suffered a tough loss where they were up on FU two games then lost the remaining three. "We have four games left and we need to win more than half of them. We are playing as a team and reaching our climax right now."
   Sara Scandiffio reiterated what Coach Devine said about reaching their climax going into the end of the season.
   "I felt good tonight and played with a little extra," said Scandiffio on her 11-kill, two-block night. When asked if she could give the extra in the remaining schedule, she said, "They all have to if they're going to advance."
   The Lady Bucs go on the road to play on Friday at 7 p.m. They will face South Division Davidson, which is (12-18, 5-9 SoCon) in a fourth-place battle with Wofford.