The Ramapo Roadrunners lost to the Stevens Institute Ducks Wednesday night, 3-1. Ramapo could not defend the Ducks for very long, only winning the second set of the game. The crowd was roaring and encouraging Ramapo, but it seemed that the Roadrunners just did not have what it took to come out victorious.
Stevens is currently ranked 10th in the NCAA's Division III national rankings.
In all the sets that Stevens won, they simply pulled away from Ramapo. Once they took a lead, there was no looking back. Stevens, being a nationally ranked team, was good competition for Ramapo, however head coach Kevin Rodgers said the Roadrunners could have held their own for a little longer.
Rodgers felt his team played with a lack of intensity and no heart.
"Our guys aren't playing to their ability, and until we do that we're not going to beat these teams that we can beat," said Rodgers.
Rodgers said earlier in the season he had stacked the schedule with nationally ranked teams to encourage his team to play harder and achieve the goal of becoming nationally ranked themselves. So far, the team has gone 6-1 against nationally ranked teams. They beat fifth-ranked River College 3-2 on March 8.
There is potential in the senior-packed team, but Rodgers feels there is no sense of leadership throughout the team. The main problem he stressed was lack of intensity throughout his team, pinning most of the fault on the seniors.
"Our leadership on the team, our captains need to start bringing intensity to games and practices, especially when you have five seniors starting," said Rodgers. "If they don't bring the intensity, then our freshmen who are starting won't bring any intensity. We need to act like we want to win."
Rodgers also mentioned doing drills and trying to bring intensity to practices, but said it will not work unless it is from within the team, not just the coaches.
It seemed that during every set, Ramapo lost a little faith and died out, letting Stevens take over. The Ducks had a higher attack percentage in every set they won. It seemed as if the Roadrunners were not playing their type of volleyball and played at the Ducks pace.
The Roadrunners are now 18-8 on the season and have another home game Thursday March 27 against Mount Saint Vincent at 7 p.m.