The crowd in Power Gym erupted in cheer as Boston College junior McKenna Gross slammed away a game-winning spike to defeat the Hokies in the fourth set. Although Virginia Tech head coach Jill Lytle Wilson challenged the play, claiming the ball was out of bounds, the referees concluded that the call stood, giving the Eagles the win. This victory marks BC volleyball’s third conference win, as the Eagles gained redemption for their loss to Virginia Tech last season.
Although BC (6-16, 3-9 Atlantic Coast) ultimately came out with the win, the Hokies dominated the first set, winning by seven points. The Eagles struggled early with service and attack errors, giving Virginia Tech (8-15, 2-10) easy points. The Hokies’ lead proved to be too large for the Eagles to catch.
The tides began to turn in the second set, as BC found its footing, keeping a small yet steady lead through the first half of the set. The Eagles found offensive success through sophomore Jane DeJarld, who earned a hitting percentage of 0.429 and swept in seven points. Sophomore Cat Balido also had a significant impact, with 12.5 points recorded.
BC’s offensive success continued into the third set, where the score remained fairly close until the end. The Eagles capitalized on Virginia Tech service errors and solidified their offense with big plays from Amaka Chukwujekwu and Balido, creating a comfortable lead to win the set by six points.
The fourth and final set seemed to resemble the first, with Virginia Tech reclaiming its dominance. The Hokies kept a four-point lead over the Eagles for the majority of the set, until BC graduate Lynn Braakhuis earned two of her 14 total points to cut Virginia Tech’s lead in half.
The win was within the Eagles’ reach, and Goss snatched it, scoring both the tying point as well as the winning point. Goss led BC to its victory with the team high of 15.5 points, 14 kills, and a strong hitting percentage of 0.314.
“It was a lot of pressure definitely, to execute and be disciplined, especially on blocking and making sure to limit our errors,” Goss said. “We had to get up high and take that final swing, to put it down and win the game.”
Overall, the Eagles earned themselves a solid win, out-showing Virginia Tech with three more kills, seven more service aces, three more digs, a higher collective hitting percentage, and seven fewer reception errors.
BC, however, did not celebrate the same victorious result earlier this week when they faced Virginia on Thursday night. The Eagles fell to the Cavaliers (5-17, 1-10), losing three sets to one.
BC came out strong to win the first set by four points, with Balido and Sophie West earned high hitting percentages of 0.571 and 0.500, respectively. The Eagles earned an early five-point run and took advantage of multiple Virginia attack errors to ultimately win the set.
Virginia quickly recovered, however, dominating the second set and shutting down BC’s offense. The Cavaliers continued their success through the next two sets, with eight-point runs in both sets to finish off the Eagles.
Although BC had beaten Virginia in five sets last season, they were unable to recreate this victory. As a result, the Cavaliers earned their first in-conference win of the season, leaving the Eagles in the dust.
Featured Image by Jake Catania / Heights Staff