Volleyball tops UMBC in four

So what if it’s Maryland and not Washington.

The GW volleyball team showed that it felt comfortable close to home Tuesday night in the Bay State, coming back from a one-game deficit to top the University of Maryland-Baltimore County, 3-1.

Despite the Colonials’ recent losing ways, they did not want to change history. GW has beaten UMBC 15 straight times and has not lost to the squad in program history.

“I thought everybody played well as a team,” coach Jojit Coronel said in a phone interview Wednesday. “Janine Brown didn’t have a good game but (Lindsay) Vernand played well. Our middles did a good job moving the ball around. I thought we really did a good job adjusting.”

With the win (26-30, 30-24, 30-17, 30-22) the Colonials (5-9, 0-2 Atlantic 10) have broken their two game losing streak heading into their first A-10 home match Friday at 7 p.m. against La Salle followed by A-10 foe Temple on Saturday. This weekend marks parents and alumni weekend for the squad.

“First and foremost, we need to take care of business and beat temple. They have a freshman that’s good,” Coronel said. “We need to do things better and faster and beat La Salle and that’s a good preparation for temple. No matter what the outcome of La Salle is we’ll go forward.”

GW hit a season-high .342 along with 72 kills.

Junior Juliene McLaughlin registered a match-high 18 kills and 14 digs while senior Lindsay Vernand had a career match with 16 kills, 12 digs, three block solos, two block assists and an ace. Vernand hit .500. Junior Shannon Parks threw in 15 kills with 10 digs while senior Jessica Vesey had a team-high 15 digs.

Junior Kelley Kabbes had 10 kills while classmate Abigail Hatter registered 11 on a .421 hitting percentage.

UMBC was led by Sarah Ball’s 16 kills and Christine Skalla’s 26 digs.

In the first and only game GW lost, the Colonials held a 19-12 advantage before the Retrievers brought the score back up to 21-21. Kabbes threw down a kill to make the score 23-22, but the Retrievers dominated GW 8-4 the rest of the way to take the victory.

With the momentum, UMBC came out of the gate firing in the second game. With a 7-1 lead, the Colonials were forced to battle hard to make it 11-11. GW dominated play the rest of the way out, sparking a 19-11 run to win the game.

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