Volleyball wins three

Nayib Moran

As sophomore Kara Chatham, freshman Cece Twitty, freshman Krista Andersen, sophomore Maggie Mergen,and sophomore Maria Nolan passively collaborated on bringing down the volleyball net, sophomore Kim Maroon was getting interviewed, while seniors Elysse Studzinki and Amy Gulyas were chatting with the crowd.

The team appeared relaxed after an incredible performance at the Villanova Volleyball Classic, where the Wildcats dominanted in their three matchups, all victories.

The team’s home debut pitted the ‘Cats against University of Maryland Baltimore County last Friday. The ‘Cats got off to a quick start in the first set, jumping to a 4-0 lead, thanks to excellent serves from Maroon, ‘Nova’s MVP of the tournament.

The set got tight at 12-12, but Studzinki and Gulyas showed leadership, and the Wildcats regained a comfortable lead of 19-15.

Andersen showcased a beautiful kill, assisted by senior Chelsea Graman, to put the Wildcats up 24-21, en route to a first set 25-22 victory.

UMBC began the second set strong, but a block by Anderson gave the Wildcats a 13-10 lead. The squad gained confidence and prevailed, finishing 25-19.

The third and ultimately final set seemed to be a snapshot of the first set. The ‘Cats started the set strong. Led by sophomore Maggie Mergen’s one-of-a-kind kills, the Wildcats finished off UMBC with a final score of 25-18.

On Saturday, the finale of the Villanova Classic began early for the ‘Nova women with their first of two duels versus the Princeton Tigers. The Princeton girls who came to the game with a record of 1-4 and took the ‘Cats to a battle of five sets, giving the women their worst set performance in the Classic, which was the first set of the game in which Princeton won 12-25.

Fortunately, the Wildcats finished triumphant 3-2, by winning the second (25-23), third (25-19), and fifth (15-12) sets. Studzinki notched 14 kills, Andersen posted a double-double of 11 kills and 12 digs, and Mergen led the team with 18 kills. Maroon got 38 digs, a career-high, and sophomore Courtney Oertli dished out 47 assists.

Coming into their last game of the Classic against George Washington, ‘Nova looked to complete the sweep. In the first set, Studzinki had a magnificent kill and gave ‘Nova the lead 12-9. As the set progressed, the ‘Cats continuously dominated but hit a roadblock as their lead of seven points was cut to four and Head Coach Josh Steinbach called time-out. The result of that timeout was a kill by Gulyas to finish the first set, 25-20.

During the second set, ‘Nova obtained a lead of 10 points and though the set was in the bag, Gulyas and Maroon kept hitting the floor, showcasing leadership and hunger of victory; the Wildcats easily won the set, 25-17.

After falling in the third set 23-25, ‘Nova bounced back thanks to Merger’s clutch ace, which gave the ‘Cats a lead of 22-21. Big kills gave them the win of the fourth set 28-26.

‘Nova has a record of 8-2. Its next opponent is Albany, who they will play tomorrow at Charlottesville, VA.