By Chris Gionta
Springfield College women’s volleyball defeated Johnson & Wales, 3-0, winning their sets 25-15, 25-19, and 25-8 respectively.
The last time the Pride played in Blake Arena, they extended their losing streak to four. However, when they entered the arena this time around, they carried into it a four-game winning streak. After wins against Gordon, UMass-Boston, Roger Williams, and Mount Holyoke away from home, Springfield looked to carry their momentum on Alden Street against Johnson & Wales.
The first set stayed competitive at the beginning, with each team trading leads until the Pride took a 9-8 lead that they would not let go of. Springfield eventually went up, 19-13, and after Johnson & Wales scored two consecutive points, Springfield head coach Moira Long called a timeout. Following the timeout, the Pride scored six consecutive points to win the set. In the set, Camryn Bancroft and Ashley Tanner each had five kills, with Jamie Albrecht right behind with four kills.
The Pride continued the momentum into the second set, getting out to a 6-2 lead and forcing a Johnson & Wales timeout. The Pride stayed consistent in this set for the most part. After Johnson & Wales took their only lead of the set, Springfield went on an 11-4 run to win the set, 25-19. In this set, it was Natalie Billet who led the way, executing six kills.
The third, and ultimately final set, was all Springfield. They got out to a 6-0 lead and never looked back, winning it 25-8. Bancroft had six kills in the frame.
Ultimately, Long credited the Pride’s defensive work in this match.
“I thought we played really great defense,” said Long. “Like we’d start it with a block. Jamie Albrecht was great in the front row blocking. (Kylie) Wixted sets the tone for our defense, which was great. And offensively, I think Sara (Labadorf) did a really good job distributing the ball.”
Albrecht did it all defensively with 14 digs and four block assists. Wixted had six block assists, and Labadorf distributed 36 assists in just three sets.
The Pride has undergone a large positive turnaround since their last outing at Blake Arena, which Long credits to a good team mindset.
“I think we’re forward-thinking,” said Long. “I think we are just thinking about the point in front of us and I think that was a really big improvement.”
Springfield will look to improve their record to 17-4 on Friday night at 7 p.m. in Blake Arena against Bates.
Photo: Gillian Dube/The Student