Springfield College has always prided itself on its volleyball programs, and this year has been no different, as the women’s volleyball team is catching the attention of everyone in the country.
The athletic spectators on campus are in a lot of different places right now. From the football field, to the soccer field, everyone is talking sports. But don’t overlook the women’s volleyball team, who have cruised through their early-season schedule, and are sitting pretty 15 games into their 2013 campaign.
The Pride have a near-perfect record. At 14-1, Springfield has rattled off 10 wins to start the season, knocking off teams including Simmons College, Amherst College, Tufts University, the Coast Guard Academy and MIT.
Springfield suffered their first and only loss in game No. 11, losing to Babson in a New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference match, but have since rebounded, winning their last four games, including Tuesday night’s victory at Clark.
“I think the start to our season can be attributed to our leadership, being aggressive, and our ‘never be satisfied’ attitude,” stated head coach Moira Long. “We have some fantastic leaders on our team who have really set the tone for what we expect each and every day in practice, on and off the court and during games.”
In addition, Long mentioned the competitive level of the team and how that has helped make them better.
“We have talked a great deal about competing each and every day in practice, making each other better and never being satisfied with what we are doing,” said Long.
It’s that kind of attitude that has helped keep the Pride fighting to improve and perform at a high level on the court. Having talent is one thing, being good is another, but winning is completely different, and only the teams that truly compete and give it everything end up on top at the end of the season.
Springfield, however, is far from done this season. They still have 12 games to go before the NEWMAC Tournament and, according to Long, still have things to work on.
“We want to be tougher defensively, blocking and in team defense. Most of those improvements come from being on the same page defensively,” stated Long.
“We realize in order to be successful on defense, we all have to do our job. If one person is out of position, we are all out of position. We will continue to have a real commitment to being on the same page.”
“We will need to continue to work on being mentally tough, saying to ourselves, ‘I will make the play.’ as opposed to, ‘Oh man I missed the play,’” continued Long. “It is a mentality we are working on as we want to continue to play at a high level, while making the smart play and working to our strengths.”
The Pride continue their season this weekend with three games at home. On Friday night, they will host Roger Williams at 7 p.m. and will host two games on Saturday, against Westfield State at 10 a.m. and Plymouth State at 12:30 p.m. All games will be part of the Tom Hay Invitational.
It’s been quite a first half for the Springfield College women’s volleyball team; a 14-1 start is something to be proud of, but buckle up SC fans: the fun has only just begun.
Alex Thomas can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org