Volleyball: Season comes to an end
The volleyball team played its last games of the season this weekend in New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) play at Hamilton College. Although the Mules finished its season 10-18 overall, and 1-9 in the NESCAC, play in October, marking the second half of the season, showed improvement for the Colby squad. In the month, the Mules won six games, including its first NESCAC win.
Colby won its first and only league match of the season against Hamilton last Friday, October 30. Heather Arvidson '12 had a match-high of 12 kills and four blocks. The visiting Mules beat the Continentals in four sets, with set scores of 25-18, 25-18, 20-25 and 25-19. Colby was playing with momentum, as it was the Mule's third straight victory, coming off of wins against the University of Southern Maine on Tuesday, October 27, and Husson College on Wednesday, October 28. In the NESCAC victory against Hamilton, Caitlin Burchill '12 had 11 kills and 11 digs, Clare Reich '11 had 22 digs and Emily Varni '13 had 14 digs and four aces. Emily Ten Eyck '13 contributed to the powerhouse performance with 17 assists and three aces. On defense, Mackie Sewall '12 and Maggie Taylor '13 each had five blocks.
In the game against Hamilton, Colby took the lead right away, gaining a 6-1 lead in the first set, but the Continentals did not let the Mules get away, coming back to tie the set at 15. However, Colby showed Hamilton who was boss and scored six of the next seven points, winning the game by seven. Colby also dominated in the second set, gaining an early 7-3 win and again winning the set by seven points. Hamilton rallied in the beginning of the third set, taking a 13-9 lead. Powerfully, the unforgiving Mules came back, tying the score at 18, but they could not hold on, and lost the set by five. The Mules finally won the match in the fourth and final set. Although the game was close, Colby only led 11-9 midway through the set; the Mules were able to score the next three points, giving themselves a nice lead. The Mules won the set by six points. "We played a great NESCAC match against Hamilton despite being on their court. I would say the way we were able to control the game made it the highlight of the season," Senior Megan Conroy said.
Saturday, October 31, Colby came up short against Middlebury College and Williams College in its last two games of the season. The Mules fell 25-12, 25-16, 25-16 to Middlebury and 25-9, 25-11, 25-14 to Williams. While the team lost, individual players still had impressive performances. Against Middlebury, Arvidson led Colby with five kills and two blocks. Ten Eyck contributed with 14 assists, 12 defensive digs and four kills. Against Williams, Burchill made seven kills and 12 digs, Conroy made 17 digs, Reich made 12 digs and Arvidson added seven kills and two blocks. Williams finished the season ranked second in the NESCAC conference with 8-2 in conference play and 26-3 overall. Middlebury finished fourth in the conference with a 7-3 conference record and 20-5 overall.
Ultimately, the Mules finished the season strong. The team started in early September with a few early season wins, and then had a tough time in the middle of the season, losing nine straight games in a row. However, the Colby squad did not get defeated and stepped up in the end of the season, winning six of its last 11 games, and winning its first conference game. "We definitely ended the season on a good note," Conroy said. "Our three wins in a row were well earned."
The team has two graduating seniors, Conroy and Larissa Levine. These two players will be duly missed. However, with three first-years, three sophomores and three juniors this year, next year's squad will not look too different. Anticipating new first-year talent, and happy to have experience under its belt, the Colby squad will look for more wins next season.