Conference Struggles

The St. John’s volleyball team on Sunday dropped its second game of last weekend and fifth-straight game overall when it lost 3-1 (25-17, 21-25, 26-24, 25-12) to USF on Sunday.

After a 4-0 start in conference play, the Red Storm now sit tied for eighth with Villanova after its recent string of
disappointing results.

The Johnnies came up short in the first set, but rallied back in the second with a win thanks to crucial kills from sophomore Ashley Boursiquot and service aces from senior Gabriela Petkova and freshman Karin Palgutova.

The third set was tight as it saw the Johnnies gave up a nine-point lead. USF (13-10, 5-5) responded by going on a 5-0 run to tie the game at 20-20. Palgutova answered back with a kill that sent the Red Storm to set point, 24-23.

However, the Bulls had three consecutive kills from freshman outside hitter Erin Fairs, who was last week’s Big East Freshman of the Week. Her three kills ended the set 26-24 in favor of USF.

“Volleyball is a game of runs,” said St. John’s head coach Joanne Persico. “We had a nine point lead, and rally score points are made on plays. The goal is to beat the team on the run.”

In the final set, USF went on a quick 3-0 run and continued their lead for the match. In the 25-12 loss,
the Bulls outhit the Red Storm .517 to .107.

“We had moments where we executed our game plan,” said Persico. “We give a lot of credit to USF for making big plays
in the third set.”

The Red Storm will try to turn things around when they host local rival Seton Hall (17-5, 5-4) on Friday.

“We have a lot to play for this weekend,” said Persico. “We’re upset about the losses and know what’s on the line.”