This was the second year in a row that we swept Amherst at home! It was a great crowd, a great atmosphere, and what fun we had! We came out ready to play, and just overpowered Amherst. They may have struggled a bit, but we also just played well. We blocked about as well as we have all season, which was really great to see. We've been working on it consistently, but it's not the kind of skill that gets significantly better overnight (although, what skill does?!) Anyway, it was fun to see us have some success with something that we've been working on.
MJ and Stud led our offense, and Caitlin and MJ led our back row defense (20, 10 digs), and Julia and Elissa led our net defense (5, 7 Block Assists). Maddie and Amy Hart both had very good nights with efficient hitting percentages, and block assists as well. One of the highlights, in addition to the statistical ones, and also the WIN, was the return of Jane!! She was cleared to full practice the night before, and then was cleared to play, so she saw her first action of the year in the last game against Amherst, which brought a roar from our faithful crowd!
Since this was our only Home Weekend, the parents all brought food for us after the match, and we celebrated like it was senior night! We do love our food! We had quite the spread of food with pizza, and fruit, and desserts galore, and so many parents. Steve, our Faculty Affiliate was there with his family too, and my kids were around for a bit, and we even have a manager now, Maxmarie, who was there for a while too. She's helping us out in practice and at home matches, and it's been great to have her help! I think that everyone had at least one parent here except for Nicki and Courtney, which was a fabulous turnout. THANK YOU PARENTS! Nicki and Courtney's parents--we missed you, but in your absence, they hosted our recruit for the weekend, and did such a good job that now she's coming--yeah!
The next morning we watched as Keene State looked like they might run away with the match against Amherst before the Jeffs came back to force a 5th game, and then won! We got off to a very shaky start with nothing really being easy, nor smooth, nor sharp, and thus we lost the first game. The second was more of the same, but we almost pulled it out, but didn't. It was odd, kind of, we were just off and out of sync, and making everything look difficult. We made some substitutions, and Jane and Stud ended up with the OH positions, but it was Amy Hart who turned things around for us. She and Julia were in sync and Amy lit it up for a team high 15 kills with only 1 error on 33 swings! Julia had very good set distribution with three players in double digit kills, and three others with 7, 8, and 9 kills.
Maddie had 7 kills with only one error, and Elissa had 13 kills with 31 swings. MJ and Jane both saw some hitting errors, but ended up with close to double digit kills. Elissa had 3 solo blocks, and 3 Block Assists, and Caitlin had a team high 28 digs. Amy added on 17 digs, and Julia added 16 for two very solid defensive performances.
We've had a whole week of practices which has allowed us to lift, and do some good breakdown work, and now we're gearing up for more Conference action as we head to Tufts to play Conn and Tufts this weekend. The NESCAC is as tough as ever, and is seeming to be as deep as ever, so all these matches coming up should be great challenges, and we love a good challenge!