Volleyball Conquers Army 3-1, Holy Cross 3-0

This past weekend, the Colgate volleyball team continued its incredible streak of six con­secutive wins to close out its Patriot League regular season on Cotterell Court during the team’s Alumnae and Family weekend. It be­gan the weekend with a 3-1 victory over the Army Black Knights, who swept the Raiders earlier in the season. Colgate continued its success when it powered over the Holy Cross Crusaders, sweeping them on Saturday after­noon, 3-0. The Raiders earned the third seed in this upcoming weekend’s Patriot League Tournament, ahead of fourth-seeded Bucknell, but behind the Black Knights and the American Eagles.

The first set was devastating for the Black Knights. With a tight defense and aggressive offense, Colgate was able to keep Army at a deficit of at least three points. At 17-14, the two teams were the closest they would ever be in the match, until an 8-2 run for the Raiders set the final score at 25-16.

Unwilling to give up without a fight, the Black Knights came out strong in the second set with an early lead of 12-8. Army’s senior middle blocker Amanda Rowell and Colgate’s junior outside hitter Maureen Colligan went kill-for-kill in the first 20 points of the set, but three attack errors on the Colgate side gave the Black Knights the advantage. At this point, Colligan and senior tri-captain Logan Keala stepped up, giving the Raiders their first lead in the match after a trio of kills dropped from Colligan and Keala, Keala acing her first serve to make the score 15-14. The two teams traded points until the set ended two plays above the cap at 26-24 when Colligan earned another kill and Army’s Rowell posted an attack error to give Colgate its final tally.

The third set followed similarly to the sec­ond, with the two teams trading points, but this time the win was posted by Army in a 25- 23 defeat over Colgate.

This did not stop the Raiders from coming back in the fourth set to close the match. They immediately dominated with a 10-2 advantage right out of the gate. Unfortunately for the Black Knights, Colgate’s lead was made even larger by a series of four consecutive Army at­tack errors. Colgate finally coasted to a 25-20 win over the Black Knights to secure the fifth of its six-game winning streak. By the end of the match, Colligan had posted a career high of 19 kills, the first Raider to do so since senior tri-captain Casey Ritt on September 24 during the season’s first contest again Navy.

“I was pleased with how my team played tonight,” Head Coach Ryan Baker said. “Our defense stepped up which is necessary against a good Army team. Maureen put up some big numbers. We still have more to improve on if we want to compete next weekend.”

With the wind in its sails, Colgate entered the competition against Holy Cross with both confidence and pride for its last game at Cotterell Court and the Raiders’ Senior Day.

The first set started slowly, with the teams trading points until the score reached 10-10.