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Gosia Wlaszczuk plays well on offense, but it’s not enough for Syracuse in loss to Pittsburgh

first_imgSyracuse senior Gosia Wlaszczuk set the ball high for fellow senior Silvi Uattara. The tall hitter strode up and pounded the ball hard into the floor, turning to her teammates as the crowd went wild. The Pittsburgh frontline dropped their heads, and Pittsburgh libero Angela Seman laid sprawled on the ground.This shot — a lofting set from Wlaszczuk, followed by a resounding kill from an SU hitter — has been all too common of a sight for opposing teams this season. The Orange ranks 12th in the Atlantic Coast Conference in kills, and many can be traced back to Wlaszczuk.Friday night was no different.The Orange setter tallied 40 assists, but it wasn’t enough for Syracuse (12-4, 3-2 ACC), as it fell, 3-1, against the Panthers (13-4, 3-2). Many of the assists went in the direction of freshman Santita Ebangwese, one of SU’s top offensive powers so far in 2015. Ebangwese finished with nine kills.“I know that (Gosia) is really consistent, and when I call for the ball, I know it’s going to be there,” Ebangwese said, “And I can choose to make good decisions (with it).”AdvertisementThis is placeholder textWlaszczuk was active early, shifting from the frontline to the back mid-play.At one point in the second set, the versatile senior launched a serve over the net, and within seconds was back in position, lofting a set to senior Monika Salkute, who sent home the kill.“I’m glad all of my hitters were on the high level today,” Wlaszczuk said, “I have to see my hitters when they have a hot hand.”The senior reached the 1,000 career assist mark in the UConn Invitational at the beginning of the season, and has been focusing on her consistency throughout the 2015 campaign.One of the key consistencies in her game has been spreading the ball to her teammates.For the entirety of the four-set match, Wlaszczuk piled on the assists, handing them out to each of her hitters. The Orange finished with 43 kills, spread over six hitters.“After every set, I try to look at the numbers,” Wlaszczuk said, “I’m trying to hit my hitters equally.”Uaatra saw her third 10-plus kill game in the last four, ending with 12 total.In the third set, the Orange pushed a comeback, led by a number of key sets from Wlaszczuk. But it never fully materialized for SU, as the Panthers took the set after a brief timeout.Wlaszczuk tallied her 40th and final assist late in the fourth set.In the end, the Orange was unable to find its footing against the Panthers, dropping its second ACC game of the season. However, the consistency from Wlaszczuk and her leadership on the court couldn’t be undermined by head coach Leonid Yelin.“I always compare it to football,” Yelin said, “Without a quarterback, even with a great offense, you have no team.” Comments Published on October 9, 2015 at 10:40 pm Contact Matt: [email protected] Facebook Twitter Google+last_img read more

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