Pack starts 2011 in respectable fashion

ThunderWolves' only loss comes to 30-win team Arkansas Tech.


KANSAS CITY, Mo. (GoThunderWolves.com - Sept. 2, 2011) - The new-look CSU-Pueblo volleyball team took to the court for the first time under new coach Jen Gomez Friday, splitting a pair of matches on the first day of the Rockhurst Classic in Kansas City.

The new passion and talent of the team was evident, especially against its opening opponent, Arkansas Tech, a team that went 31-5 last season.  The ThunderWolves lost in three, but beat out ATU in nearly every statistical category, including hit percentage, which was a healthy .242. 

Leading the Pack in the first match was senior Janae Heiser (Sr., Westminster, Colo.), who logged 12 kills to just one error for an attack percentage of .423, a career-high.  But her performance wasn't enough to lift the Pack, losing 26-24, 25-20, 25-20 to Arkansas Tech.

The ThunderWolves then drew a familiar opponent in Chadron State, which went 2-24 in 2010 but opened up with an upset win over tourney host, Rockhurst. 

After a spirited first-set in which the Pack held on for a 29-27 win, CSU-Pueblo trudged on for the four-set victory, 29-27, 25-11, 26-28 and 25-19.

Bernadette Pitre (Sr., Clifton, Colo.) was the standout player for the Pack against Chadron, going for 15 kills to just one error for a .560 hit percentage, the second-highest of her career.  Four other ThunderWolves also logged 10 or more kills to make for 64 total team kills, the most in a four-set match by a ThunderWolf squad since 2007. 

With an imperfect but respectable 1-1 record in its pocket, CSU-Pueblo will conclude the Rockhurst Classic Saturday when it opens with William Jewell (Mo.) followed by tourney-host Rockhurst in the tourney finale.