Volleyball sweeps competition at Bucknell Invitational

COURTESY PHOTO // Tribe Athletics William and Mary held a spotless 3-0 record in non-conference play at the Bucknell Invitational at Davis Gymnasium in Lewisburg, Pa.

Friday, Sept. 1-Saturday, Sept. 2, William and Mary women’s volleyball (5-2) went undefeated at the Bucknell Invitational, going a perfect 3-0 in out-of-conference play at Davis Gymnasium in Lewisburg, Pa. 

The Tribe, which looked to improve on its 2-1 performance at the Mountaineer Classic in Boone, NC the previous week, came out hot in its Friday night opener against the hosting Bison from Bucknell. 

The Bison stayed within striking distance in the first set, going point for point with the Tribe until the two teams found themselves tied 22-22. After a Bucknell error, a timely kill by freshman right-side hitter Katherine Arnason and a block by senior middle blocker Sabrina Malcolm, the Tribe took the first set from the Bison on the road.

After dropping the second set, the Tribe regained control and won the match after a 25-23 win in the third set and a 25-19 win in the fourth. Notable performances for the Tribe came from Arnason, who finished the match with 16 kills and five blocks, and sophomore middle blocker Olivia Esposito who accumulated 11 kills and five blocks en route to the Tribe’s first win of the weekend.

The Green and Gold continued its momentum into Saturday’s matchup against Cornell.

The Tribe found itself face-to-face with another strong opponent in the Big Red. After taking the first set in a dominant 25-13 fashion, things quickly turned south for the Tribe. Cornell fired back, winning 25-20 and 25-23 in the second and third sets, respectively. The Tribe responded with a comeback of its own in the fourth, winning 25-16 to force a first-to-15 tie-breaking fifth set. 

In the fifth set, seven Big Red errors paired with four kills by graduate student outside hitter Taylor Burrell propelled William and Mary to a 15-11 set win, solidifying the team’s second win of the event in as many games. 

Burrell, who finished the match with 11 kills, was one of three Tribe players to finish Saturday’s first game with double-digit kills alongside Malcolm and sophomore outside hitter Sarah Callender who both finished with 12.

The Tribe wasted no time in its final game of the weekend against Niagara, winning 25-19, 25-20 and 25-17 in three straight sets. Sophomore opposite hitter Nicole Smith led the Tribe with nine kills during the win, while graduate student setter Emma Minnick picked up 20 assists in the match.

The Green and Gold will look to continue its hot streak when it travels to the Bobcat Invitational on Sept. 8 in Athens, Ohio.


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