Sept. 3, 2010

Courtesy of Concordia-St. Paul Athletics

TAMPA, Fla. - 
Concordia's NCAA record for most consecutive wins ended at 75, Friday afternoon as Grand Valley State swept the Golden Bears 3-0 (27-25, 25-18, 25-17). The loss marks the first blemish on the Golden Bears record since the season opening match of the 2008 season. Since that time Concordia was a remarkable 75-0 with a record of 34-0 against nationally-ranked teams. This loss marked the first time since November 9, 2007 that CU lost to an unranked opponent.

Concordia's last loss was to Cal State San Bernardino on August 28, 2008, the season opener. CSUSB was also able to sweep the Golden Bears that day. The Golden Bears were able to capture two of their three National Championships during their winning streak along with two NSIC Championships and dozens of individual awards. CU was able to win a remarkable 56 out the 75 matches by sweeping their opponents. Only three times during the streak were opponents able to force the Golden Bears into five sets.

Concordia was held to .112 hitting percentage, the lowest since the loss on November 9, 2007, on the afternoon while GVSU was able to hit .345. The Golden Bear attack was not able to find many holes in the GVSU defense which had 12 blocks and forced 30 attack errors on the afternoon. It marked the second time in three matches that Concordia has fallen to GVSU.

The Golden Bear attack was once again led by Emily Palkert and Cassie Haag. Palkert led the way with 13 kills while Haag has 11. Palkert hit .429 on the afternoon but unfortunately no other Golden Bear was above .192 beside Amanda Konetchy who had two kills on two attempts. Konetchy also handed out 36 assists to go along with four digs. Kayla Koenecke was third on the team with eight kills.

The defense for the Golden Bears was able to tally 34 digs led by Taylor Fieldsted who had 12. Both Krista Erickson and Koenecke had seven. Concordia was also hurt by six service errors in the match.

Concordia was behind the eight ball right away falling behind 5-1 in the first set. CU battled back to tie it a seven, before GVSU rallied to take a 14-10 lead. The Golden Bears battled back again and took a 21-18 lead. Concordia looked poised to take the first set when they led 23-20, but the Lakers were able to mount another comeback and won the set 27-25, escaping two match points.

The Golden Bears looked ready to seek revenge at the beginning of set two by going up 7-3 early. However the lead did not last long as GVSU went on a streak and led 9-7 which forced a CU timeout. The Bears were able to take the lead back at 11-10 following the timeout but Grand Valley State had other plans as they quickly rebounded and took a 12-11 lead and didn't look back. The two teams traded points but eventually GVSU scored five straight points to take a 19-14 lead and held it all the way through the second set winning 25-18.

The third set saw Grand Valley State jump out quick on the Golden Bears and took an early 8-4 lead. The Lakers never looked back and never let CU get within two points the rest of the way taking set three by a score of 25-17.

Concordia will be back in action Saturday as they face #5 Central Missouri at 12:30 followed by a match against host #3 Tampa at 7:15.