The bleachers of Blake Arena were filled with a sea of maroon for Saturday’s Women’s Volleyball competition between Springfield College (9-4) and Emerson College (9-7).
The majority of that sea was made up of loud, energetic parents who cheered the Pride to victory in dominanting fashion on Family and Friends Weekend.
“We have some of the best parents,” said Head Coach Moira Long. “It’s great to have the arena loud and to be able to play at home on family weekend.”
Observing family members were given a show as the Pride took down the Lions in just three sets (25-19, 25-17, 25-8). Junior Kelsey McGayhey and sophomore Lauren Holt performed particularly well as they combined for 20 kills.
The first set was not handed to Springfield, however. The Pride found themselves down 13-12 before Long called a timeout and settled her team down. Springfield came out of the timeout energized and took an 18-17 lead that forced the Lions to take a timeout of their own.
However, Emerson was not aided by the timeout. Sophomore Marnae Mawdsley had a beautifully placed ace and McGayhey and Holt had back to back kills. The Pride pulled away and won the opening set 25-19, with Springfield finishing the set on a 13-6 run.
But the run had just begun as the Pride put on a hitting and serving clinic throughout the second set. Mawdsley started off the set with an ace that really pumped up the crowd and her teammates. The score was 11-10 when Holt jumped through the roof and hammered the ball straight down into Emerson’s side of the court. The kill drew some “ooos and ahhs” from the impressed audience.
Just one point later, McGayhey had three power-striking kills in a row that had the Lion’s defense frozen. After two aces from freshman Hannah Andres, the Pride went on to win the set 25-17.
If Springfield didn’t assert their dominance enough in the first two sets, they definitely did in the third. The Pride executed without flaw and took advantage of every opportunity Emerson gave them. After winning the set 25-8, coach Long was very impressed with her team’s passing.
“First ball contact was very good,” said Long. “It was a point of emphasis in practice and we passed the ball very well.”
Springfield has two more NEWMAC conference matches against Wheaton College and Clark University before hosting the Tom Hay invitational on Friday, October 10 and Saturday, October 11.