Volleyball Loses Three at Harvard Invitational

The Harvard Invitational proved a disappointing follow-up from the Raiders’ win against Coppin State last week, as they battled through three consecutive losses in Cambridge, MA this weekend. The ladies fell to Harvard on Friday in a five-game struggle, and then yielded to both Toledo and Stony Brook, 3-0, on Saturday.

“We are new teammates, so I think we need time to gel as a unit,” first-year hitter Kaleigh Durket said. “The more games we play, the better we will get, and the more consistent we will play as a team.”

Hitting exceptionally for the Maroon and White again was Durket with a match-high 20 kills, edging out Harvard’s Taylor Docter on Friday, who posted 18. Also putting it on the floor for the Raiders was junior middle blocker Casey Ritt, who recorded 11 kills. Ritt also owns two of the three total solo blocks for Colgate that evening, as well as five block assists.

Despite the loss, the Raiders service game was, for the most part, a positive on Friday night. The team accumulated seven aces through the match, five from junior outside hitter Logan Keala, who also gathered eight kills on the night. Matching her was sophomore outside hitter Maureen Colligan with eight of her own. However, it was a number of serving errors that chaperoned the Raiders’ difficult loss in the fifth set. While they had rallied back from a 12-6 deficit all the way to a classic Colgate 13-13 tie, the ladies did not quite manage to win the sprint to 15, and ended up ceding the match to Harvard with final scores of 25-23, 18-25, 25-17, 23-25 and 13-15.

Saturday morning the Raiders took on the University of Toledo, and fell to the Rockets in three hard-fought sets, 25-23, 25-18, 25-23. Colgate tied Toledo in team digs at 57, and both teams also suffered from five service errors, though Toledo made up for that with five aces while Colgate only managed two. At the front line the Raiders hammered down 37 kills, compared to Toledo’s 45. Leading the Raiders were again Durket and Keala, each with nine kills, and sophomore middle blocker Kaylee Dougherty racking up seven kills. Senior setter and captain Meghan Fanta snagged a team-high 22 assists, with sophomore setter Blaire Safir also contributing nine of her own.

The Raiders lost their match against Stony Brook on Saturday afternoon by a slightly larger margin than the weekend’s previous matches, posting their third loss of the season, falling 25-20, 25-16 and 25-17. Durket and Keala again tied each other for a team high, this time in defensive digs at 13 each. Durket kept up her team-leading kill streak through this match, putting down nine on the Seawolves’ side of the net.

Also boasting four kills each in the final match were Keala, Ritt and Colligan. Putting all the pieces together was again Fanta with 14 assists, and Safir with eight.

The Colgate volleyball team heads off to Brooklyn next for the Long Island University Invitational, where they will play the hosts on Friday at 7 p.m. On Saturday, they will face Georgia at 10 a.m. and Siena at 5 p.m.

“We’re going to be ready to win at Long Island this weekend,” Durket said.