Multiple wins for women's volleyball
The Colby College women's volleyball team started off the season with a bang with three convincing wins in as many matches. The team managed to beat each of its first three opponents without dropping a single set.
The season began on Friday night against the University of Southern Maine, and Colby quickly showed that they were more than up for the competition. Winning with scores of 25-10, 25-16, and 25-14 the Mules had little trouble handling anything USM threw at them.
There were strong performances across the board, as both veterans and rookies made major contributions to the win. Returners Emily Varni '13, Heather Arvidson '11, and Caitlin Burchill '12 each finished the match with nine kills. Varni also added 12 defensive digs and five service aces to her stat sheet.
The first-years on the team also made a major impact on the court. Ellie Linden '14 and Kate Pleasants '14 started off their collegiate careers in impressive fashion. Linden finished the match with 11 assists and six digs, while Pleasants notched 15 assists and three aces. Friday's match took on double importance as it allowed the team to rack up the all-important first win of the season while also upping their confidence and energy for the rest of the tournament.
Saturday, the Mules faced Husson in the morning and the University of Maine at Farmington in the afternoon. Once again Colby clearly demonstrated their advantage beating Husson in straight sets with scores of 25-16, 25-8, and 25-19. Pleasants had another great match, recording 24 assists, while classmate Lily Kramlich-Taylor '14 made an impact, recording six kills and six aces. Arvidson recorded another eight kills, while Varni and Claire Reich '11 anchored the defense with 10 digs apiece.
The afternoon was more of the same for the Mules as they beat UMF with a score of 25-13, 25-17, and 25-12. Once again, the stat sheet reflected the depth of the Colby squad. Kramlich-Taylor played a major role in the series of shutouts racking up 10 kills, while Arvidson had seven kills and Burchill and Varni recorded six kills each. Pleasants turned in another impressive performance with 19 assists, six digs and three aces.
With such a strong start to the season, Coach Candice Parent had a lot to be proud of, not least the impressive performances of her key first-year starters. "Our two first-year setters (Pleasants and Linden) really did a nice job with the limited practice time we had before these matches," Parent said. "For their first collegiate matches, they were really strong."
The team travels to Bates on Wednesday, September 15 for their first New"ˆEngland Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) match and then hosts the NESCAC weekend tournament, during which they will play against Bowdoin and Tufts. With these tough matches looming, the confidence boost gained from the team's strong play this weekend could prove to be crucial.