After a disappointing start to UAA play in which they were soundly beaten in three straight home matches, the women’s volleyball team bounced back, beating their cross-river rival Stevens Institute of Technology 3-1. Sophomore Alexis Jackson and freshman Shelby King, a pair of outside hitters, led the squad on the front line again, picking up 10 and 11 kills, respectively. The win was big for the team’s morale, and they will need the confidence if they want to keep this season a winning one.
“I was really proud of us today for pushing through that first loss and dominating the game,” Jackson said. “We’re going to take this momentum into UAAs this weekend.”
A back-and-forth set had both teams using timeouts to regroup until Stevens clawed their way back from an 18-12 deficit to win the set 25-21. Tuesday’s match was the Violets’ first in over a week, and their inconsistency may have been due to them shaking off the rust. In the second set, they refocused and were able to come through when it mattered most, taking six of the last nine points en route to a 25-22 win.
“We just got tired of losing, and we all came together to change the pace of the game,” Jackson said.
That set proved to be a confidence boost, as the Violets used runs of six straight and four straight points to take the third set in similar fashion, 25-20. The fourth set, which they took 25-17, was their most dominant of the night. They began on a 5-0 run, and despite a few half-hearted comeback attempts from Stevens, NYU never relinquished the lead, using a run of four straight points at the end to clinch to victory.
Senior middle blocker Nicole Frias, the team’s captain, has remained consistent throughout the entire season, always flirting with double-digit kills and anchoring the team with leadership on the court. Though the team has struggled, they still have an opportunity to recover, as the majority of their UAA season is still to be played. They’ve seen some encouraging signs recently, including solid play from freshman setter Daryl Mitchell, who had 35 of the team’s 40 assists in the Stevens match.
After clinching a desperately needed win for morale, the Violets will travel to Case Western Reserve University to play in another UAA round robin. They will square off against Carnegie Mellon and Emory on Oct. 17, and Brandeis and the hosts on Oct. 18. With a 10-10 record to this point, this weekend could finally cement NYU with an above-.500 record.
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