BY TYLER MILLIKEN // Oct. 14, 2016 //
The Women’s Volleyball team was unable to overcome their season-long struggles in Commonwealth Coastal Conference (CCC) play Thursday night, suffering a tough 3-1 loss to Roger Williams at home.
The Colonels fall to 7-10 on the season and now stoop to a 0-5 record in the conference. On the opposite end of the spectrum, the Hawks moved to 6-0 in the CCC and 14-6 overall.
Roger Williams came out firing on all cylinders to start the first set, as they dominated Curry in almost every facet of the game. They built a quick 10-0 lead over the Colonels, and there was no energy to be found for the hometown team.
First-year coach Elizabeth Morris was visibly frustrated with her team’s inability to start strong and said after the game, “I think that playing up against the number one team has always been a challenge for them.”
The Hawks’ momentum overwhelmed Curry, as they fell behind 17-3 at one point. A combination of miscommunication and awkward play in front of the net led to quite a few points for Roger Williams. The Hawks went on to win the first set by a score of 25-6, clearly showing why they’re the top team in the CCC.
The Colonels came out a different team in the second set and scored early to build momentum on their way to grabbing a 6-1 lead. They inflated their lead to eight over the middle of the set by a score of 16-8 and from there, finished the second set with a 25-16 score. Senior Alyssa Keeney was all over the court, and finished with 25 assists on the night, a second-best in the game.
Roger Williams wasn’t quite as dominant as they were in the first set, but they still responded early and erased Curry’s first point with a five-point run of their own to take an early 6-1 lead in the third set. It seemed as if every time the Colonels was making adjustments, the Hawks went on a run to offset it.
Multiple bad serves and poor attempts at setting up teammates in front of the net, led to Curry giving away free points. It was no surprise when Roger Williams took advantage of these miscues and captured the third set, 25-17. A late run by the Colonels turned morale around a bit, but it wasn’t enough to make the set look competitive.
During the fourth set, it was tough to predict what Curry was going to do next as in certain moments they were locked in and wanted to make a run at the deficit, but at others, everything seemed to collapse. When facing a team like Roger Williams, there isn’t any room to lose focus at different points.
The Hawks went up 7-3 in the blink of an eye, and it was a deflating scene for the home team. Roger Williams cheered after each point they scored in this set, displaying an amount of intensity that the Colonels just couldn’t match.
A plethora of small, two or three point runs kept the Hawks holding a healthy lead over Curry. The final nail in the coffin came later on when Roger Williams went on an 8-2 run. The spikes set-up by the Hawks were flying through their opponents, with the Colonels late to react. The score sat at 21-13, and Roger Williams seemed set to coast to a victory from there.
However, Curry attempted to come back from this deficit as they scored three points with the Hawks on the brink of victory, but it wasn’t enough. Set four concluded with a score of 25-17, with the final point thanks to senior OH Kristen Boyer.
The Colonels will have to move on quickly from this one, as they are slated to play again Saturday morning. Moving forward, Coach Morris said, “We started out with the tougher part of the conference, so I think we’ve built ourselves up to where we are able to face the teams we’re coming up against with a lot more energy, power, and commitment.”
The Colonels are going to need a mindset like that entering the last leg of their season if they hope to make some serious noise before the CCC tournament.
Kill-Streak: Senior Nicole Grambley was the only player to record double-digit kills in the game with 10. Her 11 points scored also led the Colonels, but two Hawks out-scored her.
Keep on Digging: Junior Courtney Carroll finished with a game-high 11 digs and currently ranks sixth in the CCC with 275 total digs. However, her 5.19 digs per set earn her a second-best mark in the conference.
Road Tripping: Curry embarks on their second-to-last away game Saturday as they play Eastern Nazarene at 11 a.m. for another CCC matchup. The Lions currently sit a 5-13 overall and 1-4 in the CCC.