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The GW Hatchet

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Women’s volleyball falls to Towson in last non-conference match

This post was written by Hatchet reporter Mark Eisenhauer.

Back at the Smith Center on Sunday for the first time in three weeks, this was a chance for GW to get back on a winning track.

But even against a struggling Towson team (6-13), the Colonials could not find a rhythm on the court, falling short in their final non-conference match, 3-1 (17-25, 20-25, 25-23, 26-28)

The first set started evenly as both teams traded big kills to earn their first points of the match. With the score at 10-12, Towson began to pull ahead after a service error by senior middle blocker Jamie Armstrong. Within minutes the Tigers (6-13) had opened up a 12-19 lead that the Colonials (5-9) would never recover from, dropping the set 17-25.

Freshman Setter Emily Clemens serves the ball inthe Colonials' loss against Georgetown earlier this season. Cameron Lancaster | Contributing Photo Editor
Freshman Setter Emily Clemens serves the ball inthe Colonials’ loss against Georgetown earlier this season. Cameron Lancaster | Contributing Photo Editor

“In volleyball if you make one little error you think about it for a long time and we just need to let that error go and move on because when we excel we are just unstoppable,” sophomore Maddy Doyle said.

Set two brought much of the same, as GW lost the first five points due to stellar plays by Towson junior Victoria Williams, inducing a timeout from head coach Amanda Ault. Outside hitters Landon Garvik and Maggie Skjelbred came out of the break refocused, tallying a few kills of their own to tie the score up at 14.

Despite GW’s best efforts, though, once again the team fell just short and dropped the second set 20-25, heading into the locker room facing a potential shutout.

Garvick, who Ault said gave a very well rounded performance, would finish the day with an impressive ten kills and six digs.

The Colonials came out fighting with newfound energy in the third set, as kills by Garvik, junior Kelsey Newman, and freshman Loren Williams propelled the team to a score of 18-14. Holding off a Towson rally, the Colonials held steady and narrowly won the set 25-23 on yet another kill by Newman, who ended the day with a team-leading 18 kills.

When asked what changed at halftime sophomore libero Maddy Doyle said, “It was really just an understanding that this is our home court and we need to protect it. What we were doing just wasn’t acceptable,” sophomore libero Maddy Doyle.

With the momentum on their side, GW continued to score in the fourth set, pulling ahead to an early 7-1 lead, their largest of the match. The intensity augmented on both sides as Towson fought back to make it 15-14, but not before the Towson bench received a rare yellow card for arguing with an official.

After the Colonials gained a 24-22 lead, thanks to more hard fought play by Newman, Doyle, and Armstrong, a fifth set looked likely. But after kills by Towson’s Williams and junior Saitaua Iosia, Towson dashed the Colonials comeback hopes by a score of 28-26.

“It’s clearly effort. Until we stop second guessing ourselves, until we stop looking for someone else to either play that ball or bail us out and start focusing on what we can do better individually to better the team, that’s where the problem lies,” Ault said.

GW opens conference play Friday, when they head to Richmond, Va. to take on VCU at 7 p.m.

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