The women’s volleyball team brought pre-conference play to an end last Saturday with its Colgate Invitational during Alumni Weekend. The Raiders lost both matches at Cotterell Court, against Princeton and then Syracuse, both very skilled teams. Princeton is a pick to win the Ivy League and Syracuse, a Big East juggernaut, beat the Raiders in four sets on Saturday.
The Raiders’ day opened against the Princeton Tigers at 11 a.m. Princeton, who is 4-2 on the season so far, took all three sets in one fell swoop, recording scores of 18-25, 17-25 and 16-25. Play was back and forth throughout the beginning of the first set, and both teams found themselves tied at 10, but Princeton then pulled ahead to win. Set numbers two and three did not go so well for Colgate, as the Tigers carried their momentum over from set one and Colgate’s hitting percentage dropped like a stone. Senior Captain Katrina Zawojski led the Raiders at the net with nine kills, and first-year middle blocker Kaylee Dougherty with seven kills and two blocks. First-year Blaire Safir and junior Meghan Fanta cashed in with 15 and 13 assists, respectively. Senior captain Jackie Adlam held together the defense with 14 digs, and junior Kelsea Loveless chipped in six more.
The Raiders faced the Orange for their second match of the weekend. After losing closely in sets one and two, Colgate came out on fire in the third set, winning by a vast margin of 13 points, taking it to four, but Syracuse bounced back and finished the match. The final scores were 22-25, 21-25, 25-12 and 22-25. Leading the defense again, Adlam brought up 21 digs for the Raiders. Safir led the way with 28 assists while Fanta chipped in with 20 dimes. In the front, Zawojski knocked 16 kills onto the Orange’s side and sophomore outside hitter Logan Keala recorded 11 kills. Colgate is now 4-8.
With the first part of the season over, Colgate heads into Patriot League play starting tonight at American University at 7 p.m. The Raiders will then travel to Navy to face the Midshipmen at 4 p.m. the next day. ‘Gate’s Patriot League opener is a rematch of last year’s Patriot League Championship, so it should be a great match. Navy is not a team to shake a stick at, as Colgate needed to come back from two games down to win 3-2 in Annapolis last season. Whatever the results may be this weekend, The Patriot League campaign should be a fun one.