Things didn’t click as well as normal in the beginning, but the Springfield College women’s volleyball team had the heart to fight and grind out a win against Clark University in a New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference showdown at Springfield on Tuesday, October 7. Springfield struggled to get into a rhythm in the first set.
“We were a little bit surprised,” said Head Coach Moira Long. “We took a little too much time trying to get into a rhythm.”
However, despite the early struggles, the Pride stayed in the game by displaying their usual passion and energy. They were resilient and would refuse to lose the opening set. Toward the end of the set, sophomore Lauren Holt stepped up for Springfield as she jumped through the roof for a huge block and fired a perfectly placed kill in the center of Clark’s defense. Holt’s play propelled the Pride to victory in the set 25-21.
The Pride were able to find a rhythm in the second set. They hustled all set long, diving for balls and making incredible plays. However, Clark was fighting too and refused to go down easy. Springfield led the Cougars 13-12 and it looked like an exciting finish was in store. Instead, the Pride pounced on the Cougars exploiting their weaknesses as they finished on a 12-4 run.
The third set turned out to be the last one as the Pride dominated. However, it was not that way for the entire set.
Springfield missed some hitting opportunities and Clark was able to hang around as they tried to form a comeback. The Pride gave up five straight points to cut their lead to 13-11 and Long called for a timeout.
Springfield came out of the timeout ready to play again. Holt continued to play well in the second half of the set as she had a big time kill and finished the game with a block. The Pride finished the final set on a 12-5 run, almost identical to the second set.
Springfield will be the host of the Tom Hay Invitational this weekend. Hay was once the head coach at Springfield and saw a lot of success. It is a very special tournament for the Pride.
Long stated, “He’s (Hay) always been a part of our program and the tournament really builds the legacy we have going and want to keep going for years to come.”
The tournament will be packed with great competition that will be a good test for Springfield to see where they stand with the big guns. Some of the competition includes Clarkson University and Williams College.
The Pride open the tournament on Friday, October 9, as they take on Westfield State University at 5:00 p.m. in Blake Arena.