Volleyball Overwhelms Competition to Maintain Perfect Start to Season
It took just one attempt for Amherst to give its coach, Sue Everden, her 700th career victory, as the volleyball team continued its hot start to the season with a five-set victory at Middlebury on Friday.
On Saturday, the Firedogs returned to LeFrak for their 2018 home opener, posting back-to-back straight set victories over Sage University and Newbury College to maintain their perfect 6-0 record. Everden is the 14th coach in Division III volleyball history to achieve the feat.
On Friday night, the Firedogs opened NESCAC competition against the Panthers. The match was exciting from the opening whistle, with both squads trading the lead throughout the night.
In the first set, Amherst gained a quick lead before the Panthers came charging back and led 21-19. The Firedogs won six of the next eight points to win the set, 25-23. The second set was just as competitive, with the Panthers closing the frame on a 10-6 run to win the set 25-21 and tie the overall match.
Amherst gained a quick lead in the third set and held on for a 25-22 victory. The fourth set remained close, but a late Middlebury run gave the Panthers the victory, 25-22, and tied the match at two sets apiece.
In the fifth and final set, the teams traded leads before Amherst ultimately won four straight points, stifling the comeback attempt and winning both the set, 15-10, and the match, 3-2.
Cam Hendricks ’20 led the team in both kills and blocks, recording 15 and six, respectively. Reigning NESCAC player of the week Jamie Dailey ’21, who won the plaudits for her performances in this weekend’s three contests, recorded a double-double with 13 kills and 15 digs. Claire Dennis ’20 and Emily Kolsky ’20 each had 12 kills for Amherst, while first-year Skyleur Savage tallied 29 digs on the night. Charlotte Duran ’20 also contributed with 49 assists.
On Saturday, Amherst hosted a round robin for its home opener. In the first game, the Firedogs were tasked with handling the Newbury College Nighthawks. Amherst got off to a blazing start, turning an 18-5 advantage into a 25-7 first set victory. The Firedogs kept carried this momentum into the second set, scoring 12 of the first 17 points and winning the set 25-11. Amherst won a more competitive third set, 25-20, to give them the hosts their third sweep of the season. Kolsky led all players with 19 kills, while Savage recorded 13 digs, and Adelaide Shunk ’20 had 37 assists. Pearl Accord ’21 and Alex Rone ’22 each recorded three service aces for the Firedogs, and co-captain Lauren Reppert ’19 finished with five kills.
In the second match, Amherst dominated from start to finish, defeating Sage in straight sets.
The Firedogs allowed only 22 points over the three sets, with the final score being 25-12, 25-6, 25-4.
Duran led the team with 36 assists, Savage had 11 digs and Dailey finished with 13 kills. Sophie Launsbach ’22 added ten kills and Kalley Wasson ’21 contributed a block.
The Firedogs return to action on Wednesday, Sept. 19 against Plymouth State University at 7 p.m. and again on Friday, Sept. 21 against NESCAC rival Trinity at 7 p.m. Both matches are home at LeFrak Gymnasium.