Williams Volleyball opened their season Saturday afternoon, defeating Wellesley College 3-0 at the Brandeis Invitational. Starting strong, the Ephs won the match, 25-13, 25-14, and 25-16. Williams and Wellesley battled once in the 2013 season, resulting in a similar outcome.
The Ephs started the match strong, entering the court focused and capturing their first set win, 25-13.
Their winning drive carried the Ephs back into a quick lead early in the second set. Although the Blue gained a slight lead, the Ephs gathered some crucial points and continued to pull away, winning big in the second set, 25-14.
The Ephs started slowly in the third set, but after regaining their momentum, Williams eventually overcame Wellesley and came back for their final set win, 25-16.
Williams Coach Christi Kelsey commented, "there were moments in each of the three sets around points 10-15, where we were playing point for point with Wellesley." She noted that her team gained momentum, "either through our transition work off the ball and/or our team defense that helped us pull ahead and stay ahead to close out each set."
The Ephs began the second match of the day against Coast Guard, a matchup that hasn't occurred since the 2008 season. Continuing their momentum from the last match, Williams overcame Coast Guard 3-0. The set scores were 25-16, 25-15, and 28-26.
Heavy hits and a strong defense earned Williams the first two sets, 25-16 and 25-15.
"I think the biggest test came right at the end of set three," commented Coach Kelsey. Both teams played a solid game and battled until the score reached mid-20's. The Ephs were up 24-22 toward the end of the final set, when critical points were gained by Coast Guard to tie up the score 24-24. Keeping their composure, the Ephs fought on to gather the winning points, making the final score 28-26.
Williams setter Ryan Farley made strong decisions that led the Eph offense and earned her a spot on the Brandeis Invitational All-Tournament Team. "We had solid ball control both in serve receive and defense," stated Coach Kelsey, "which helps Ryan be more effective as well and put our offense in the best possible position to score."
On their first day of match play, the Ephs played solid volleyball in both the offensive and defensive realm. When asked about the execution of plays, Kelsey also mentioned, "I was really proud overall that each of our attackers and defenders stepped up at various times in both matches to help create opportunities for our team to score."
Coach Kelsey went on to make a summary comment about their season opening, mentioning the amount of hard work her team put into off-season and preseason training. "Overall, this was a solid performance by our team to kick off the 2014 season," she said. "This is just one step to begin the season but I'm so proud of their effort and hard work over the past two weeks."
Williams will play its next match at home against Vassar College, starting at 7pm in Chandler Gym.