Friday, September 23, in their first official Patriot League match, the Colgate women’s volleyball team successfully swept Holy Cross, with a final score of 3-0 and individual set scores of 25-14, 25-18 and 26-24.
Early in the first set, the Raiders scored ten consecutive points, giving them a comfortable lead against the Holy Cross Crusaders. Thanks to three kills from both sophomore middle blocker Jaelah Hutchison and senior right side hitter Katie Stebbins, the Crusaders never came within eight points of the Raiders. Hutchison proved the most valuable player in the first set, recording four individual kills.
Senior defensive specialist Madison McAndrews proved a key player, contributing 17 digs, the highest of any Raider in the match.
Senior outside hitter Kathleen Harris reflected on the victory.
“We came out with a lot of energy, and I think that we executed the gameplan well with our serving and passing,” Harris said. “It was great to sweep them 3-0 at their place.”
Saturday, September 24, the Raiders faced Army in their second Patriot League match of the season. Army proved to be a much tougher opponent than Holy Cross, ultimately coming out on top against the Raiders. Colgate managed to snag the first set, but fell behind with a final match score of 3-1 and individual set scores of 13-25, 25-23, 25-19 and 29-27. First-year middle blocker Taylor Flaherty proved her worth to the Raiders, recording a career-high 13 kills, while Hutchison played another impressive game with 12 kills, hitting .500, and pitching in four blocks and four services aces.
Colgate led early on in the second set, but could not hold off the Knights, falling short with a set score of 25-23. The following two sets echoed similar performances from both teams, the Raiders proving to be viable opponents and just barely falling short in each set. Junior setter Molly Smith contributed 31 assists for the Raiders, and sophomore outside hitter Katie Stansbury had 10 kills and 11 digs.
Harris offered feedback about the match.
“Against Army, our strong blocking really gave us a lot of fire and momentum, especially in the first set,” Harris said. “However, Army made some adjustments in the later sets that we weren’t able to adapt to quickly enough. It was definitely a learning experience as we have to figure out how to adjust to teams when they bounce back. It was a tough loss, but we’ll get them next time at home.”
This match left the Raiders with a Patriot League record of 1-1 and overall season record of 5-8. The Raiders seem confident that they will continue to improve and progress on an individual level and as a team as their season continues.
The Raiders face off on Friday, September 30 at Cotterell Court at 6 p.m. against Navy.