By Jon Crossman
WATERTOWN, Wisconsin – The Eagles poured their whole team spirit into an arduous flurry of games this weekend, finishing with two wins and two losses. Facing familiar rivals in the Maranatha Sabercats and also Oak Hills Christian College, a team the Eagles played at the start of the year at Spikefest, there was very little time to recover between games in the Friday/Saturday 'double-double-header'.
The Eagles played first against Maranatha on Friday, giving up an early loss, before playing Oak Hills immediately after and bringing it back in a well-fought match to even out the first two games with a win and a loss. They played Saturday afternoon against Oak Hills again, gaining another decisive victory, before losing again at the hands of the Sabercats to end their weekend in Wisconsin. Regardless of the outcome of the weekend, the Eagles played well in each of their games, fighting hard to hold on to any ball possession the opposing team granted them.
In the games on Friday night, the Eagles brought a lot of energy to the court early on. Starting out strong, Faith let the first set slip by with only a four point difference (21-25), and played with a vigour that was obvious to anyone viewing the game. The next two sets were not in the Eagles favour, with each set ending with the same result (16-25). Oak Hills proved to be a good contender as well, but the Eagles finished some tough rallies to end the first day of competition with an Eagles win (25-15, 25-15, 25-22).
Saturday started with a similar result to the previous game, with the Eagles getting an early lead on Oak Hills (25-23) before they came back in a stunning second set (26-24) to defeat the Eagles and balance it out. The Eagles rallied back to win the next two (25-13, 25-14) and ruin Oak Hills' chance at a comeback. Feeding off of the two-game win streak, the Eagles were determined to beat Maranatha the second time around. However, Maranatha's front row had no intention of letting Faith follow through, executing an impressive 44 kills and forcing the Eagles to put up 12 overall blocks at the net. The Eagles ended their weekend trip with another composed fight against Maranatha, taking the loss (0-3) in stride and using the defeat as a chance to analyze Maranatha's signature plays in preparation for the regional tournament.
An Eagles player who had an immense impact on the weekend and stood out as an inspiring supporter even off the court was Karis Giegerich, who stood tall as a blocking and kill machine (.308) in the final Maranatha game.
The Eagles (10-7) play their final regular season game on October 27th against Kansas Christian College, at 1:00 p.m.