Women’s volleyball drops opening pair of Patriot League matches

Emily Evancho

Assistant Sports Editor 

The women’s volleyball team suffered a rough beginning in its first Patriot League volleyball matches, falling on the road to both Holy Cross and Army this past weekend with two 3-0 decisions.

“We had two tough matches this past weekend, but I think we played well, especially against Army, and I think now we just need to close out games,” Erika Eastley ’17 said. “I’m excited to see how that transfers to our matches this weekend.”

The Sept. 20 match against the Holy Cross Crusaders proved to be a problem more of endurance than of the Bison’s skill. The Orange and Blue easily established themselves early in each of the three sets, taking 10 points off the net without a problem. But at the end of each set the Bison ran out of steam, allowing the Crusaders to snap victory out of the Bison’s hooves.

Keane Brazda ’17 tallied a team-high 23 assists for the match. Other top players included Eastley and Jordan Walker ’17, who combined for 11 block assists, while Morgan Mientus ’14 recorded double figures in digs.

“We had a tough first weekend of Patriot League, and we really dropped the ball against Holy Cross,” Mientus said of the Holy Cross Match. “I think last weekend could be a blessing in disguise, and people may begin to underestimate us like we did Holy Cross. Being the underdog tends to be a positive thing in volleyball, so hopefully we can work extremely hard in practice this week and take Navy and American by surprise.”

The battle truly came on Sept. 21 in the Orange and Blue’s match against Army. The first set alone was finicky, pulling back and forth with six lead changes and 16 ties. With a 24-21 advantage late in the set, the victory seemed to be the Bison’s when Army snatched five points to take the lead. The second set was ultimately Army’s, but the Orange and Blue did not let the battle die. The third set was entirely the Bison’s until Army finally took the lead 21-20. The struggle ensued until Army was able to rip three points from the Orange and Blue, ending the match at 25-22.

“We didn’t start too well on Friday, but on Saturday, we played a great match against Army, and we’re really excited to play again this weekend to redeem ourselves,” Kristen Titley ’14 said. “Last weekend gave us a good idea of a few key things to work on this week in practice and we should be ready to go for Navy on Friday night.”

Confident and ready, the Bison will return to their home court to challenge Navy tonight at 7, and American tomorrow at 5 p.m.

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