The College of William and Mary swept through its weekend matches, following its first two CAA losses of the season, defeating James Madison University and George Mason University.
The Homecoming contests saw Head Coach Melissa Shelton record the 250th win of her coaching career. Additionally, senior setter Kim Mount and sophomore outside hitter Erin Skipper set conference highs for assists and kills, respectively.
TRIBE 3, MASON 0
Against George Mason, the College received a spark from junior outside hitter Lauren Powell, who jumpstarted
the Tribe in the first set with five kills. Powell’s early kills gave way to strong play from Skipper and Mount as the College battled to take a 30-28 win in the second set. The back-and-forth action of the second set saw 12 ties and five lead changes before sophomore middle blocker Ginny Bray landed a powerful corner kill to secure the set.
The tense struggle did not end there, however, as the Tribe followed the set with a slim 25-21 victory in the third. While the Tribe’s offense was overpowering, its defense was less impressive, allowing Mason to connect
on .272 of its attacks (the Patriots usually average a .171 hitting percentage).
“We’re starting to come down the stretch this season where each game is really important, so two wins here really helps our cause,” Skipper said.
Skipper’s performance against Mason was truly impressive as she set CAA season highs in both kills and points, with 19 and 20.5, respectively. Mount was impressive too, with her conference-high 45 assists against the Patriots. Mount’s play earned her co-CAA player of the week honors.
Her teammates Powell and Bray made her job easier, notching double-digit kills, while junior defender specialist Lindsey Pflugner contributed 13 digs and an ace.
TRIBE 3, JMU 0
Unlike its first set with the Patriots, the Tribe quickly fell behind against JMU 15-8 to open the first set. Once again, Skipper and Mount were there to bring the College back into the set. Skipper recorded eight of her 13 kills on a .667 attack percentage during the set, while Mount fueled the offense with a total of 36 assists and 12 digs during the match.
“We just remained composed, even through the rough patches, and just kept playing our game,” Skipper said.
The Tribe’s first-set comeback crushed any momentum for the Dukes, who recorded only six kills in a 25-14 loss.
The College clinched a shutout in the third set, feeding off freshman outside hitter Brooke Bauerfield’s first two career aces and Powell’s four kills to pull off a slim 25-23 victory.
The College returns to action Friday at 7 p.m. against Towson University in Kaplan Arena.
The Tigers have garnered wins in three of their last four matches and is 6-3 in the conference. The College heads into the match winners of two consecutive matches and owners of a 6-2 record in the CAA.