Squaring off against two conference opponents in three days can be a daunting task for an ordinary team. But the Georgetown volleyball squad is no ordinary team.
Georgetown (12-10, 4-5 Big East) took care of business on Friday night at McDonough Arena, defeating St. John’s (10-15, 1-7 Big East) three sets to one. Two days later, the team went down to the wire with Connecticut (11-12, 1-7 Big East) but emerged victorious after a full five sets.
The two victories allowed the Hoyas to climb back above .500 for the first time in a month. The success comes at a good time, as the Blue and Gray will battle two more conference opponents in Seton Hall and Rutgers this coming weekend.
After dropping the first set 25-20 on Friday, the Hoyasneeded to regroup. It seemed as though Head Coach ArlisaWilliams’ prematch fears about St. John’s depth and constant rotation were well founded, as St. Johns wore Georgetown down and climbed out of an early deficit.
The Hoyas, however, seized an early 3-2 lead in the second set and never looked back. Aces from freshman middle blocker Dani White and freshman outside hitter Alex Johnson combined with five consecutive serving points from freshman libero MacKenzie Simpson to lead the Hoyas to a dominating 25-15 second-set victory.
The third and fourth sets were much closer, but solid play from senior libero and captain Tory Rezin(team-high 14 digs) and senior setter Ashley Malone (match-high 39 assists) proved crucial. The Hoyastook the third and fourth sets 25-23 and 25-21, respectively.
On Sunday the Hoyas followed their exhilarating win over the Red Storm with a tight five-set victory against Connecticut on Sunday afternoon.
Both teams played a sloppy first set, resulting in nine ties and two lead changes. After it appeared that the Hoyas would pull away in the first set, the Huskies rallied to pull within a point at 24-23. After a timeout, Georgetown tallied its final point on a Connecticut service error, winning the set 25-23.
Georgetown’s sloppy play continued into the second and third sets, both of which they dropped 25-17. The team that emerged for the fourth set appeared to be a completely different squad than the one that had played the previous two. After battling to a 13-11 lead, the Hoyas pulled away, taking the set 25-20. Junior middle blocker Lindsay Wise set the stage for the Hoyas in the fifth set, recording a kill for the first point off an assist from Malone as Georgetown dominated the set, opening a 10-5 lead and eventually winning by a score of 15-11.
Excellent play from Rezin and Malone again anchored the Hoyas’ victory, as both recorded a match-high of 16 digs apiece. Malone led the match in assists again, notching 41 on the afternoon. FreshmanDani White led the Blue and Gray in scoring with 17 points.
The Hoyas will look to keep their momentum as they travel to New Jersey this coming weekend for two more conference matches. On Friday, the Hoyas will play Seton Hall (13-10, 4-4 Big East) at 7 p.m. On Sunday, the Blue and Gray face Rutgers (8-17, 1-7 Big East) at 2 p.m.