Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Lexie Fisher named 1st Team All-NESCAC, and Senior Classic

Lexie was honored by the NESCAC as a 1st Team All-Conference member. After being 2nd Team last year, this is a very nice honor for the senior captain! She was also honored by the volleyball coaches in New England as one of the top 25 seniors in all of New England.

What a successful career Lexie has had over her four years at MIDD. She holds the school record in Block Assists, and ranks second in Total Kills for a career. Her name appears in several other categories such as Total Blocks, Kills/game, Attack attempts, and single season and single match statistics too.

We will certainly miss Lexie for not only her skills, but also for her leadership and personality! Nice job, Lexie!!

Williams ends season for MIDD

We were prepared for this match since we had just played them, and had specific changes we wanted to make. I think we all felt like we succeeded in making those changes, and that we just came up against a tough opponent in Williams. We played well, we hit well, and our defense was very solid. They just proved to be too tough for us in the long run. They went on to win the Championship against Amherst two days later.

Two Full Weeks of Volleyball to end Regular Season

These next two weeks were packed full of Volleyball with a mid-week match each Wednesday, and tournaments on both weekends. We had some injuries, and some extenuating circumstances which saw Whitney and Lindsay both miss some matches. This put several people in different positions: Lexie played some middle, and so did Kate. Reisa played some outside, and do did Molly. Ollie played some right side, and some back row, and the team really came together and worked hard despite the situation on any given day.

The Williams match was a highlight of this time, despite losing 3-1. We came out strong and took the first game behind tough serving, and aggressive play at the net! We lost a squeaker in the 2nd 33-31, and that was a turning point in the match, I'm afraid. They got some confidence back, and switched some players around, and we couldn't quite get them out of system as much after that. It was a well-played match, and we felt good going into our last Conference weekend of the season against the CT teams.

This weekend was a tough one, and we knew that going in. We were hoping to win at least two matches, and expected to compete in all three. The only match we didn't really compete for was Wesleyan, and the other two were both lost in the 5th, by just a couple of points. We actually played very well, just not quite well enough at some key moments to pull out a victory, but it was a very good showing by the team.

This put us at the #7 seed for the tournament, and we were paired to play Williams at Amherst the following weekend.

Parent's Watch 3 Wins over Maine teams on Parents' Weekend!

Parent's Weekend at Middlebury this year fell on a weekend when we hosted Conference matches against all 3 Maine schools, which was very exciting for us. Normally we're not even home on Parent's Weekend, and to host a weekend of Conference matches is perfect! It was a fun weekend all around, and we put on quite an exciting show for the parents!

The Bates Bobcats were the first foe of the weekend, and didn't pose much of a threat to the Panthers on Friday night. That allowed us plenty of time to enjoy the great food provided by the parents in Lawson Lounge after the match. It was great to see all the parents, and family members and friends of the team. Some parents knew eachother, and many were meeting for the first time, so this time together was special for everyone. All but three players had at least one parent here for the weekend, which was great! Molly, Reisa, and Natalie's parents were all unable to attend, but we all benefited from all the goodies provided by the rest of the parents!

On Saturday, we gave the fans their fill of exciting volleyball! After getting off to a terrible start against Bowdoin, who we felt like would be the team to beat, the girls rallied and came back from a 0-2 deficit and came from behind to win the 3rd game, and then on to win the 4th and 5th in dramatic fashion! We turned things around, and really started to play behind good team leadership, and a lot of heart and soul by the entire team! Colby was more of the same, except that Lindsay had come down with a migraine, which certainly affected her play! She toughed it out, and Olivia played in the back row for her to help our defense, and everyone else picked up the slack! Lexie proved why she's our senior leader and go-to player as Lauren found her often late in the match to put the victory in hand. We were down 13-11, and came back to win 16-14. We played just well enough to win, but I was so proud of the heart the team showed. Colby played very well, and we may have been outplayed, but showed extreme poise in finishing out that game with a win!

A BIG thanks to the parents and friends and family for all of the support that weekend. They made it a very special event for us. In addition, the 3 wins put us in a tie for 2nd in the Conference!

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Tufts Win first in years!

We traveled down to Tufts to play only our 3rd Conference Match of the season. Tufts has been one of the strongest teams in the Conference, and we hadn't beaten them in several years. Once again, we started very strongly, and won the first game behind some tough serving, and good passing, allowing our offense to really get good looks. Tufts seemed to be a little shocked, and recovered for the 2nd game by getting us out of system, and back on our heels trying to keep pace with their offense, which had picked up steam since the first game. The 3rd game was again like what we saw at Colby-Sawyer, when we came from behind to tie the game, and then pulled out the victory in the 3rd. This is what we hadn't really done earlier in the season, and to be able to accomplish that in two matches in a row, against two tough teams was an accomplishment for our team. We were able to recover from bad plays, or from good plays from Tufts much more quickly, and get back on track with our game plan. Our defense was very strong, led by our new libero Natalie DuPre, and freshmen setter Lauren Barrett did an excellent job running the offense, and serving tough. Whitney Bean, who was here last fall, but didn't play due to injury, has come out and really made a difference for us too--she was going head to head with the leading blocker in the Conference, and was only stuffed once, and had several kills for a very strong hitting %. The steady eddy's from last year are middle Josie, and outside hitters Kate and Lindsay. Our only All-Conference Selection from last year, Lexie Fisher laeds our offense day in and day out. Lexie has been a tough one for other teams to match up against, and we're happy to see that even though she's a senior, and they know what she can is capable of, she really poses problems for other teams, not just with her hitting, but also with her blocking! Great win--any win in our Conference is considered a good win, and this one was really nice to have under our belt heading into our home Conference weekend where we'll play the Maine schools!


This week at Middlebury was a crazy week, really. The Middlebury Initiative was happening this weekend, and so our facilities were taken over from Thursday through Sunday. We had people out of practice due to soreness, we had random old-fashioned facilities with obstacles both on the floor and around the net, and in general, I wasn't sure we were going to be as prepared as we wanted to be for Colby-Sawyer, who was having a great season so far. We played down at Castleton because we weren't able to play our own home game in our gym for reasons stated above. Again, we came out strong, and won the first game, and after we lost the 2nd and third games closely, and got down in the 4th, it seemed like Skidmore might be happening again. The turning point was when we came back from 21-24 to go ahead 25-24. That was a huge swing for us. We served well, and kept the pressure on them so that we were in system more often, and in control of the tempo. We won that 4th game, and the enthusiasm and confidence seemed to catapult us well into the 5th game. We were in command of that game from the start, despite the score being relatively close. We had several match points, and even though we gave up a couple, we really played a complete game, and that is what we needed to do before heading into some tough Conference play Sunday and next weekend. It was a great team win, with 10 of the 11 players on the team contributing through playing time!


We came out really strong in the first game against Skidmore, and I thought we looked good. We were playing well, and it was nice to see us get out to a strong start. After the first game, however, two things happened: Skidmore found their groove hitting, and we got off track a bit, and we seemed out of system more than we were in it. The third game was what killed us, though, I think. We were close the 2nd game, but couldn't quite come from behind to even tie the game in the late 20's, and when we lost the 3rd game decisively, I think we lost confidence. The bright lights of the evening were Kate Heath and Whitney Bean, who both had shoulder surgery last spring, and have been a little slower to get going this year. They both had excellent games statistically, and more importantly, they were sharp. Both were swinging well, and with power that they hadn't quite found consistently until tonight, and both were just sharp--that was great to see, despite the team loss!

Sunday, September 30, 2007


Norwich is only in it's second year of varsity status, and even though they are much improved from last year, they are still not quite at the level where they are challenging. Sometimes those matches are the hardest to get up for, and I think the team did a great job coming out prepared to play. We kept our intensity pretty well. We weren't as sharp as I would have liked to see, but we didn't score that many points for them, and that's a plus in a game like this. We played pretty steadily, and everyone got to contribute, and that's always nice!

We now have our only weekend off, and all the other MIDD teams are home this weekend, so we're all pretty excited to be able to enjoy watching everyone else and being a "fan" this weekend! We're looking forward to having some time off, no matter how brief it is!

Union match

Union is a much improved team over last year, and they deserved to win. We came out a little sluggish, and were not passing as well as I would have liked to have seen, but we showed moments of very good volleyball. We served pretty tough, and that was good for us. Mallory came in off the bench to serve and did an excellent job. She has a tough serve that is proving to be a good weapon for us.

They had some good middle blockers, and we got stuck a little trapping our middles, but when Josie and Whit went in hard and held the middle, then Lindsay, Kate, and Lexie had an easy time with only one blocker! Natalie is proving to be a very quick defender in the libero spot, and between Olivia and Reisa we have a very solid defense.

I think the difference tonight came down to the off-speed balls, and out of system balls. Union could get very down and made a lot of mistakes trying to make too much from a broken play, and we didn't really capitalize on that like we could have. When we keep our out of system balls in play, and then really attack their free balls, that's when we'll be playing well. It was a long ride home after a 5 game loss like that. I think they may have stolen one from us.

Amherst Classic

Well, all in all it was a successful weekend at the Amherst Classic. We faced very tough competition with Brandeis and Amherst, and we all felt like we played fairly well against Westfield and Johnson and Wales. In order for us to be the team we want to be in our own Conference, then we need to be able to challenge a team like Brandeis more than we did, even if we don't win that match. The good news was that we felt like we played well against a good team in Johnson and Wales. Our hitters were swinging well, and finding the open spots, and our defense was very solid, although we missed having Reisa with us.

The next day we started slowly against Westfield, but regrouped to pull that match out in 4 after losing the opening game. We really didn't play well against Amherst at all, but Natalie was forced to sit out the first two games due to a very tight back, but made an immediate impact when she felt able to return in the third game.

We are now armed with a lot of things to work on, and so we'll go into practice next week focused on those things. We ended the weekend at our favorite sandwich shop (The Black Sheep) right in Amherst, so our ride home went smoothly! Although, some of us would have liked to have changed our order by that time to Pad Thai instead of a cold sandwich?