Volleyball made strides towards its season-long goal of improved consistency in a conference win over Davidson Saturday night.
The Colonials (7-16, 3-4 A-10) defeated Davidson (8-12, 1-6 A-10) 3–1, swinging .225 percent higher than the Wildcats on the game. Davidson’s .065 attack percentage was the lowest GW has limited its opponents to all year.
“We came out and stuck to the game plan we needed for us, and that was the reward,” head coach Sarah Bernson said. “We beat the team by a good margin.”
The win came after a stretch of six losses in the team’s last seven games, including falling in three straight sets to conference-leader VCU Friday. Despite the loss, Bernson said the game against the Rams was a stepping stone to the win.
“VCU is just a better team,” she said. “There were a lot of good things that we’ve been trying to be consistent about that were there. It was about trying to build upon yesterday, even though we lost, and using what we did yesterday to win today.”
Junior outside hitter Kelsey Clark, senior outside hitter Aaliya Davidson and freshman outside hitter Marianna Warren led the offense with more than 10 kills each and a combined .270 attack percentage. Sophomore setter Jaimeson lee finished with a season-high 45 blocks on the night.
The Colonials bested the Wildcats at the net throughout the match, outblocking them 12-4.
GW was without freshman middle blocker Callie Fauntleroy and sophomore outside hitter Jordan Young, leaving the team shorthanded. In three of the four sets, only nine players entered the game.
Junior middle blocker Alexis Lete said despite the short bench, the reserves held their own.
“Our bench is pretty deep,” she said. “I don’t think that one person being injured affects the whole team because we have so many other components to this team that can come out and succeed for us.”
An eight-point serve run for graduate student setter Stacey Benton, which included two aces, was crucial in the Colonials’ first set win. High swing percentages by Clark, Lete and Davidson sealed the victory.
A close second set began in favor of GW, but ultimately ended with a Davidson win. Two key kills from Clark were able to bring the two teams to a tie, and the match remained close, but Davidson went on a four-point run and won the game 25–22.
Falling in the second set motivated the team to come back more aggressively in the third, Clark said.
“They just took this win from us, and we’re on our home court, and we just beat them 25-8,” she said. “So we took it personally, and we came back harder.”
Clark had a team high of four kills in the third set, and the GW defense held the Wildcats to a .000 attack percentage. After an 8-0 run, the Colonials broke the tie with a 25–13 set win.
GW pulled away from Davidson immediately in the final set, and led by as many as nine points before finally winning the game with a set score of 25–13.
The Colonials will travel to Saint Louis for another conference matchup Friday. The first serve is scheduled for 7 p.m. Central Standard Time.