Volleyball stuck in late-season slump

Edward RudmanContributor

The volleyball team took on Bentley University for homecoming weekend, losing in four sets and continuing a stretch of sub-par play.

The Owls came out strong against a Bentley team that was 17-4 on the season coming into the game and an undefeated 6-0 in NE10 play. The Owls were able to win a close first set 25-23. Defensive specialist, Tea Carter, senior, credited the quick start to preparation during the week.

“We watched lots of film, that’s pretty much our routine for every single opponent. I don’t think we treated them much differently than any other opponent,” said Carter. “We made sure we knew what they were running and what their vulnerabilities are, and we just had more time to prepare for them than other games.”

Carter played well, collecting 37 assists, the 12th game Carter has been able to record over 30 assists. She has been very consistent as of late,recording over 30 assists in the last seven of eight games.

The Owls dropped the next two sets consecutively, losing them 25-18 and 25-15. Even though the sets got away from the team towards the end, the Owls continued to fight and push the Falcons.

Going into the fourth and final set down 2-1, the Owls knew the importance of winning the set and so did the crowd, as they got rambunctious in the stands trying to support the team as much as they could.

The set was neck and neck throughout, and the Owls found themselves down 25-24 with Bentley only needing one more point to win. They extended the set, trading points back and forth, but in the end, were unable to come and lost 28-26.

“We had a lot fire out on the court but we still made a lot of our own errors which got us in the end, but it was still a really good, fun game,” said defensive specialist Anna Venard, a senior.

“It’s a bummer we lost but it’s definitely a good step forward. They’re a top
team in the conference and we fought pretty hard and we showed we can put up a good fight.”

Venard was able to accomplish a milestone in the game, tying her career high of 27 digs in a game. Other key performances came from two freshman: outside hitter Ella white, who recorded 14 kills, four digs and three blocks, and Gabriela Gaibur who recorded 18 digs, six kills and two service aces.

The loss drops the team under .500 play, down to 9-10 on the season overall and 2-3 in NE10 conference play. The Owls will look to rebound and get a win on Tuesday, Oct. 22, when they play Molloy College at home.

“I think the biggest thing for us is that we are good enough to beat any of these teams out there but we’re a young team, and I think that’s really showing in the fact that we gave away a lot of unearned points and we need to start forcing teams to earn their points,” said head coach Lisa Barbaro. “Right now, I feel like that’s the difference between winning and losing for us.”

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