Volleyball Bounces Back in Big Way
At 10am on a Saturday morning, most students were asleep. The women’s volleyball team, though, was more than awake for their early match, beating the New Hampshire Wildcats three sets to one. Senior outside hitter Lauren Whyte had 27 kills and sophomore Jamie Armstrong hit an impressive attack percentage of 58.8% as GW took a key win in their penultimate non-conference game.
Both teams came into this game off of straight-set losses in the Smith Center yesterday at the GW/Nike Invitational. GW suffered a tough loss to Princeton, losing the last two sets by just two points, while New Hampshire was defeated handily by the nationally 15th ranked BYU Cougars.
The first set saw eleven ties and four lead changes, with New Hampshire grabbing the set. They were led by freshman Tori Forrest’s five kills and benefitted from three service errors, including one late in the set by sophomore Landon Garvik.
The closeness of that first set carried into the second, which saw four ties early. However, GW went on a 13-4 run, with senior Lauren Whyte nabbing eight kills. The momentum continued for the Colonials, who saw some great plays along the net from Kelsey Newman and freshman Maggie Skjelbred. The Wildcats, whose hitting percentage was well below their season average, never led in a set after that. The third set saw GW get kills on 42.9% of their attacks as New Hampshire suffered from poor communication.
Head Coach Amanda Ault has mentioned how much she enjoys playing at home, and even with a sparse crowd for the 10AM start time, the players fed off the energy. Lauren Whyte’s 27 kills were delivered with a fiery energy and a speed that was difficult for the Wildcats to handle. The New Hampshire back line finished the game much weaker than they started the game. Redshirt freshman setter Jessica Lubic did a great job of ball handling, finishing with 50 assists and orchestrating things well for GW on their side of the net.
This is just their third win this season after what was a difficult out-of-conference schedule. They only won 10 sets in the 12 games prior to facing New Hampshire. Lauren Whyte’s performance in this game is very promising; this was her first game this season more than 20 kills.
The Colonials will be back in action tonight at 7PM when they take on the the Brigham Young University Cougars. Coverage starts at 6:55 with Nkwa Asonye and Mike Martenak on the call.