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Sickafoose: CSU volleyball sets program record in style

Sickafoose
Sickafoose

The last time they pulled something like this off, it went down as one of the greatest moments in team history.

Let’s rewind the tape before we go any further to fully paint the picture we’re currently looking at.

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It was the night of Nov. 2, 2011 when a no-name Colorado State volleyball team welcomed one of, in not, the best teams in the entire country into Moby Arena for what everybody who had a logical head had already written off as a sure loss — the same night CSU made believers out of everybody.

A No.5 powerhouse Nebraska squad had been dominating all match long, winning the first two sets on its way to what looked like would be a sweep. Faced with a 2-0 deficit, the Rams battled back to win the following three frames and give true definition to the term “Moby Magic.”

Fast forward to Saturday when CSU found itself in the same position for the first time since.

Abiding by the laws of nature, history repeated itself. The Rams did the unthinkable, digging themselves out of the hole that Utah State had put them in, and doing so with the possibility of making history on the line.

The 2013 CSU volleyball team was written into the record books this weekend after capping off a five-set thriller with yet another great comeback. The No. 9 team in the nation is now marked as No. 1 in program history starts with its 21-0 streak to open the season.

But wait, this was supposed to be a rebuilding year, right? I mean, the 2012 team that left its mark is all but gone by now. Graduating four key seniors had to have phased CSU, even if in the slightest.

Nope.

On Saturday night I asked head coach Tom Hilbert if he actually thought back in August that his team would be reaching to new heights the way that it currently is.

“…no…” was all he could muster after pausing to give it thought. A couple seconds later he repeated himself, this time with a higher, more concerned tone in his voice.

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“No…no WAY. I’m not trying to be negative, but absolutely not. My hat’s off to them for proving me wrong,” Hilbert said.

And the win came in the best way possible. Why give anything less to your fans who were forced to stream the game online from another state?

Keeping us all on the edge of our seats only made it that much sweeter, though I’ll admit I wasn’t feeling the same at the time.

Being a sports writer, there are some habits that you begin to fall into. The most popular one has to be starting to write your game story before the final second ticks off the clock, which sometimes backfires. My heart teared up a little bit when I watched my buddy Stephen Meyers, who was racing the Coloradoan’s 10 p.m. deadline, highlight his entire document and click “delete all” at 9:48.

It was a journalist’s worst nightmare, and a fan’s best dream come true.

But at the end of the day, I wouldn’t have had it any other way. Because ten years down the road, just like the girls on the team, I’ll know exactly where I was and what I was doing on the night that history was made by CSU volleyball.

Sports Editor Quentin Sickafoose can be reached at sports@collegian.com and on Twitter @QSickafoose.

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