Sports Women's Sports

Springfield women’s volleyball stay strong and end the season with a 24-8 record

Serve tough and pass the ball. @SCWVBall stays strong, posting a 24-8 record on the year. By @stephenm330
Stephen Monahan @stephenm330 Serve tough and pass the ball. That has been the motto for the Springfield College women’s volleyball team throughout the season. This motto also led to their downfall in the second round of the NCAA tournament in a tough match against Wesleyan Downs. Wesleyan used tough serving to limit the Pride’s attack as they were able to hold Springfield to a .116 hitting percentage over the course of the match. They would use the momentum from their nine service aces to take down Springfield in straight sets, 25-18, 25-17, 25-15. Despite going on multiple runs throughout the game, the Pride were out-digged by Wesleyan 54-51. “Wesleyan dug everything we threw at them,” said head coach Moira Long. “There were many long rallies that seemed to last for a minute each but in the end they finished more rallies that we did.” Springfield ended the year with a 24-8 record despite holding a 12-1 home record. Blake Arena felt like home for many Pride members, including senior Jen Donnelly. “We know that when we are here, we are supported by so many people even outside of volleyball,” said Donnelly. “That creates a positive environment for us to feed off of.” The season for the Pride has been defined by their team chemistry and hardworking ability. These qualities were demonstrated through the team averaged 11.09 assists and 15.32 digs per set. Freshman setter Sara Labadorf ran the middle for the Pride offense to near perfection, as she totaled 1,030 assists with only 13 errors on the season. “My role is to give my hitters consistent and hittable sets,” said Labadorf. “Consistency is so important so that my teammates can trust that I will put the ball where they need it.” The Pride offense featured five hitters who recorded at least 140 kills, as Donnelly leading the way with 343 kills. The team made strides throughout the season as they grew closer together. “We improved our service receptions, offensive tempo and crossing plays and blocking,” said Long. “Our team also improved with each day in our connections with each other. This was a tight knit group who really loved to play together and for each other.” Making connections was an essential part of the team this year as they focused on growing together as a team from the beginning of the season. “Whether its freshman to seniors or all over the place, we want to form connections with each other to make the team stronger together,” said Labadorf. The Pride stayed together through tough situations over the course of the year. “Our team supported me through recovery from brain surgery from July and the death of my mother at the beginning of October,” said Long. “They understood I was grieving and gave me little note or texts of support or asked each day how I was doing outside of volleyball.” She added, “The lessons we all learned were that it is ok to be vulnerable and ask for help and also the importance  of allowing those who care about you to help and support you.” Photo courtesy of Jack Margaros

Leave a Reply