Volleyball Suffers Tough Weekend Away

This past weekend, the Colgate volleyball team traveled to Penn State to participate in the Hampton Inn Classic, where they went 1-2 on the weekend. At the tournament, the Raiders defeated Virginia Commonwealth on Friday, 3-2, before falling to Penn State and Seton Hall, both 0-3.

Colgate came out of the shoot a little bit slow on Friday, as game one began with a tight contest in which the Raiders, after a 14-14 tie, finally managed to run away with a solid lead and finish the first set with a 25-20 victory.

The second set was also a trial for the Raiders, as two times early in the game they were down by a pair of points, but battled their way out of each. Colgate was then fired up enough to blast by the Rams on a nine-point run. Though VCU did make a dent in the Colgate advantage at 22-20, the Raiders would not let them get by, and  they sealed the deal, 25-21, with two critical kills from junior Maureen Colligan.

Colgate took control of game three, gaining multiple leads throughout the course of the set, including a late lead of 20-18. Unfortunately, the Raiders relinquished power to the Rams, who got lucky with a seven-point streak that ended the set in their favor, 25-20.

VCU came out strong in the fourth set, taking an early 13-6 lead. Colligan and fellow junior Kaylee Dougherty put down some intense kills to bring the Raiders within a couple points at 15-13. They did not hang on to their momentum quite long enough, however, and the Rams gained four more points on the Raiders, before Colgate once again closed the gap up to 19-17. Colgate tied it up at a crucial 24-24, but VCU managed to capitalize at the net with a solid block that earned their victory, 26-24.

In the fifth and final set, Colgate played determined to win, gaining an early two-point margin over the Rams. Though VCU did not give up and tied the game at both 6-6 and 7-7, Colgate snatched the lead and never looked back, conquering VCU 15-11, and consequently taking the match, 3-2.

Things took a turn for the worse on Saturday, however, as the Raiders suffered a difficult defeat to a ranked Division I opponent, No. 24 Penn State. Colgate kept up with Penn State for the beginning of the game, but they were stopped at 14 points, and the Nittany Lions ran away with the win, 25-14.

The second set was no more promising for the Raiders, as Penn State reached a five-point advantage at 7-2 and never let the Raiders see another opportunity, as they dominated the set, 25-15.

Colgate bounced back at the start of the third game, taking two early leads and also closing in on the Nittany Lions at 13-12, after which they battled back and forth for the lead before Penn State stole nine consequtive points and closed the door on the Raiders, 25-15, thus winning the

match 3-0.

Later that afternoon, the Raiders took on the Seton Hall Pirates, striving in vain to finish the tournament with a win. The first set of the match saw Colgate up as late as 21-18 before the Pirates came back to capture the game, 25-22.

The Raiders could not muster up a rebuttle in the second game, and they never achieved a lead throughout the set, though they did close the gap late in the game.

Seton Hall, however, still managed to walk away with another win, 25-21.

In the final set, Colgate again came out with an increased level of intensity, starting the game off with a two-point advantage before struggling back and forth with the Pirates throughout a large period of the set. Kills from senior captain Logan Keala and sophomore Michelle McCarthy put the Raiders up 15-12.

The Raiders continued to battle hard throughout the duration of the set and manage to hold on until the bitter end, when a 25-24 lead was surrendered to the opponent, and Seton Hall took the hard-fought win, 27-25. Seton Hall claimed the match, 3-0.

Colgate’s 1-2 record at the Classic moves their season record to 3-3. The Raiders will will compete again this weekend in the Niagara/Canisius Invitational beginning on Friday at 3:30 p.m.