A three-game winning streak turned into a three-game losing streak for Elizabethtown College’s women’s volleyball team. Following a loss against Millersville University on Wednesday, Oct. 22, the Blue Jays lost six straight sets against both Haverford College and Kean University on Saturday, Oct. 25.
The Blue Jays’ first match of the day was against Haverford. The Blue Jays lost two of the three sets by only two points. The final scores for each game were 25-23, 25-21 and 25-23. The Blue Jays put up a fair fight in each game, but could not hold their own against Haverford. Haverford had 12 service errors within these three games, which played a role in the close scores.
The Blue Jays only managed to get 30 kills in all three matches, compared to Haverford’s 41. Senior Kelci Scannapieco led the team with nine kills, followed closely by junior Megan McNaul who had seven kills. The team put up ten blocks against Haverford. Scannapieco contributed four of these and McNaul had two, while first-year Brittianni Phillips contributed an additional six blocks. Junior Steph High had 13 assists in the three matches and junior Brynne Kirsch pulled in nine. Senior Jen Cook and McNaul led the team defensively with 19 and 18 digs, respectively.
The Blue Jays saw a similar outcome later that day in their three games against Kean. The Blue Jays had 29 kills and walked away with 19 errors. The opposing team had 42 kills and a similar number of errors at 20. Scannapieco got nine kills and put up four blocks. McNaul added to the team’s total with six kills and senior Samantha Hicks contributed five. High led the team in assists, totaling 20, while Kirsch had four assists of her own. Kirsch also contributed defensively with eight digs, while Cook had 13 digs and junior Shannon Deck had ten.
The scores for these matches against Kean were 25-16, 25-21 and 25-21. In the first set, after a Blue Jay service error, Kean took and held onto the lead for the entire game. In the second game, the Blue Jays fought back. The held the lead for the majority of the game. Unfortunately, when the Blue Jays were in the lead at 18-12, Kean came back fighting with an 11 point streak. This gave them the lead at 23-18. The Blue Jays were still hopeful after a kill from McNaul and a block by Scannapieco put the score at 24-21, but Kean took the win with a final kill, ending the game at 25-21. Kean then held onto the lead for the entire third game, sealing the match 0-3.
Although these losses were disappointing, High acknowledges that in order to perform well, “the team must always work in unison,” and on Saturday “that was not happening consistently.” High observed that the team struggled with passing, which made their offense predictable. Even when they fixed this issue, another one arose as the Blue Jays’ opponents “set up a strong block against” their middle hitter, anticipating the ball going there. The team struggled to “get on the same page,” High said.
The Blue Jays will play their last matches at home on Saturday, Nov. 1, against Lycoming College and Wilkes University. According to High, as the Blue Jays finish out their season, they hope to “play as a unit and end on a high note” and send the seniors out with some wins. With a 0-3 loss against Cabrini College on Tuesday, the Blue Jays’ record currently stands at 11-19. With all their conference matches behind them, the Blue Jays should be able to focus on these last two upcoming matches and finish out the season strong.