The GW volleyball team established itself as a team that can compete with nationally-ranked opponents at the Golden Bear Classic this weekend. But the Colonials failed to prove that they can beat them, as they dropped a three-game match to 12th-ranked University of Florida at the Recreational Center in Berkeley, Calif., Friday
GW attacked the Gators and held leads in all three games, but fell short of its goal to upset the Southeastern Conference opponent. GW (6-1) did respond from its loss to the Gators by ousting McNeese State in Saturday’s close consolation match, which gave them third place in the classic. Senior Tracee Brown led GW with 33 kills throughout the weekend tournament. The team will continue its tough non-conference schedule next weekend at the American Classic at Bender Arena, where they will face host American, North Carolina State and Purdue universities.
GW 3, McNeese State
Saturday, Sept. 9
GW proved it could respond to a tough loss the night before and defeat a solid McNeese State team Saturday at the Golden Bear Classic. With the four-game victory (19-17, 14-16, 15-7, 15-8) over the Cowgirls, the Colonials won their sixth game of the season. The two-and-a-half hour contest saw GW pound a season-high 74 kills, including two 20-kill games. Brown had 20 kills in the game, and seniors Renee Arnold and Suzana Manole added 16 and 15 kills, respectively. Atlantic 10 Player of the Week Jill Levey posted impressive numbers, with seven kills, 24 digs and 53 assists.
With the match tied at a game each, the Colonials played their best in the third game (.300 attack percentage – 20 kills, five errors in 50 total attacks), which set the tone for the remainder of the contest. GW also had 19 more block assists (33-14), indicating the Colonials’ strong net play.
Florida 3, GW 0
Friday, Sept. 8
The 12th-ranked Florida Gators took a bite out of GW’s five-game winning streak Friday night, sweeping the Colonials in a competitive three-game match. GW played a tough match against Florida and held leads in every game, including a 7-1 lead in the final game. But Florida’s experience proved good enough for victory despite a valiant 13-kill performance by Brown and a 31-assist showing from Jill Levey.
The Colonials fell in a close 15-11 final game despite pounding 14 kills and committing only six errors. The 15-12 Florida win in the middle game came behind a game-high 19 kills for the Gators. GW had it’s best game statistically in the second game when the Colonials pounded 17 kills and earned their highest attack percentage (.256) of the match. But the Gators’ .351 attack percentage (19 kills and six errors in 37 attempts) pushed Florida past the Colonials.
The opening game was GW’s poorest of the season thus far as the Colonials fell 15-6. While Florida played near-flawless volleyball to open the four-team tourney with 13 kills and only two errors, GW committed a match-high 10 errors in the opener.
Florida’s Nicole McCray (13 kills) and Niki Hartley (11 kills) led the way for the Gators.