AU volleyball earns first conference loss against Lehigh

Eagles lose final regular season home game, celebrate record-breaking careers

AU volleyball earns first conference loss against Lehigh

Up until their final home game of the regular season on Nov. 6, AU volleyball was unbeaten in conference play. But that changed against Lehigh, where the team gave up three straight sets and earned their first loss against a Patriot League opponent.

Lehigh led AU (19-11, 13-1 PL) in the first set having won 25-21. The Eagles fought back in the second set with attacks by senior outside hitter Aleksandra Kazala and sophomore outside hitter Helena Ebaek, but lost the set 23-25.

The third set opened with points made from a double block by Kazala and senior middle blocker Loren McKenzie and kills by junior outside hitter Shannon Webb. The set also featured a double block by junior middle blocker Jeanne Westney and sophomore setter Olivia Wassner later on, although AU lost 17-25, which ended the game.

The game also showcased a few record-breaking seniors, acknowledging their accomplishments throughout their careers. Senior setter Kennedy Etheridge became the fifth Eagle ever to reach 3,000 assists. Etheridge holds the leading record in the Patriot League conference.

Loren McKenzie became the ninth Eagle to ever reach 300 blocks. By the start of the game, she secured 405 kills and has scored a total of 583 points overall. McKenzie came into this season having recovered from an achilles injury during the 2017 season.

Kazala is the fifth Eagle with 1,500 kills and third player to reach a combined record of over 1,000 kills and 1,000 digs. She also had scored a career total of 1788.5 points.

Head coach Barry Goldberg touched on these seniors’ successes in an interview.

“They have been the backbone of our success for the past few years,” Goldberg said. Ola, Kennedy and Loren are challenged to lead us to success. They have succeeded to this point and are hopefully ready for their final effort in the coming week.”

The Eagles play their last game in the regular season away at West Point Saturday at 4 p.m.

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