Volleyball Takes Two of Three on Opening Weekend

Boston College volleyball

On Saturday night, Boston College women’s volleyball (2-1) fell in the finale of the Boston College Invitational against Fresno State University, dropping all three sets to end a very promising tournament on a sour note. Though the Eagles remained competitive—holding a lead near the midpoint of each set—they failed to build substantial leads throughout the match, opening the door for the Bulldogs to come back each time. After building a 15-12 lead in the first set, the Eagles rapidly lost momentum, as the Bulldogs punctuated the set with a 13-6 burst, securing a 25-21 opening victory. Though the second set was much closer—the lead changed hands six times after a late 17-17 tie—the Eagles ultimately dropped the set 26-24. Down 2-0, the Eagles struggled to find their game in the final set, allowing the Bulldogs to jump out to a 5-0 lead. The team spent the rest of the match desperately attempting to close the gap. It expended much of its energy trying to keep the score close, unable to pull in front, and ended the match with a 25-22 third set defeat. Freshman Sophie West led the team with 7 kills in the match, while sophomore libero Devon Michaelis tallied 19 digs.

The three-set loss came as a bit of a surprise after the dominating effort turned in by the Eagles in their first two games, both against LIU Brooklyn. On Saturday afternoon, they won the first game of their doubleheader, taking all three sets from the Blackbirds. Only the second set was remotely close, as the Eagles posted identical 25-14 routs in the first and third sets. Nursing a slim one-point lead late in that set, West registered the finishing kill, putting the Eagles in an unassailable position heading into the final set. Senior Julia Topor led the team with a match-high 15 kills, and senior Madisen Lydon added 15 digs. Freshman Jane DeJarld led the Eagles with 34 assists in just her second match with the team. Perhaps most impressively, the Eagles hit for a .389 killing percentage as a team during the match, a mark that greatly aided the easy victory.

While not as dominant as they were Saturday afternoon, the Eagles opened their season with a 3-1 victory over LIU Brooklyn on Friday night. After a commanding 25-18 win in the first set, the Eagles struggled a bit in the second set. They trailed for the majority of the frame, with service errors plaguing the team as it tried to generate some traction. The Blackbirds stole the set 25-23, knotting up the match at one set apiece. From that point, the Eagles reestablished themselves as the aggressor, easily taking the third and fourth sets, 25-17 and 25-19 respectively. They eliminated the sloppiness of the second set and worked together to dispatch the Blackbirds. Junior Sol Calvete led the team with a double-double—13 kills and 12 digs. Sophomore McKenna Goss also tallied a double-double of her own—10 kills and 12 digs—and classmate Camille Oemcke racked up a match-high 41 assists.

Though head coach Chris Campbell was pleased with the opening result, he noted that there should be a focus on growth at this early time of the season.

“There’s still some room to do better,” Campbell told BCEagles.com. “You could see it at the beginning of training camp—and it’s starting to show up here—there’s a character of this team about defense that I really like. I think there’s really something for us to work with. There’s some great potential here.”

Featured Image by Lizzy Barrett / Heights Staff