If the women’s volleyball team can translate this weekend’s play into next weekend’s Ivy League tournament, its opponents are in for a beating.
On Saturday, the Red faced St. Francis and SUNY-Albany in the Big Red Invitational.
“We knew these teams wouldn’t be at our level,” head coach Christie Jackson stated.
St. Francis entered its match with a weak 9-21 record. In the quickest match of the season, the Red swept the Red Flash 15-1, 15-1, and 15-4. The 40 minutes was not fast enough for the visitors.
The Flash had negative marks in hitting for all three of its games at -.067, -.091, and -.214, respectively, which means the team had more errors than kills in each game. Only one player for the Flash had over .000 in hitting, and four kills was the team high.
For Cornell, the numbers were decidedly better. The Red hit .500, .375, and .250 in the three games, for an overall hitting percentage of .360. This number was outstanding in its own right, but made phenomenal considering St. Francis hit -.118 as a team.
The Red was lead by senior middle blocker Robin Moore, who had a team high six kills. Junior middle blocker Jamiee Reynolds also had six kills, and was perfect with a 1.000 mark in hitting. Freshman setter Rachel Rice had the usual team high 13 assists, this number uncharacteristically low due to the quickness of the game. Freshman outside hitter Debbie Quibell had a team high 7 digs along with junior outside hitter Jennifer Borncamp.
Action later that night pitted Cornell against a squad from Albany hungry for revenge. It would leave disappointed.
This was the third meeting between the Red and the Great Danes. The other two matches found Cornell the victors with a score of 3-1.
The Danes entered this match at 3-19, looking to prevent a score of losses. Cornell quickly dispelled Albany’s hopes by taking the first game 15-3. The second game featured a vicious attack from the Danes, who went ahead 4-0. A block by Reynolds and a kill from Borncamp helped the Red get back on top, who went on to take the game 15-10 after trading serves with Albany.
In the third round, the Danes were unable to muster determination and relented the game and match at 15-6.
The Red put up similar numbers to the ones from the St. Francis game. A .392 Cornell attack percentage eclipsed Albany’s .041. Additionally, Cornell had 41 kills, while the Great Danes could only plant 25.
Robin Moore was again the team leader in kills with 12, while Reynolds and sophomore defensive specialist/setter Mary Margaret Moore had four digs. Rice was again the offensive spark with 28 assists.
Jackson was impressed with the weekend’s play.
“We all set our own individual goals, and those were to make easy plays, to keep control, to worry about yourself and not so much everybody else, and to get your job done. I think everybody did that. Just being a better team when we leave was our goal.”
These matches were important for several reasons. In addition to coming out of the matches knowing the team is able to pull everything together and commit less errors, the Red used them as preparation for the Ivies. Jackson was able to play people deeper off the bench, which will help in tournament contests that go into the fifth game.
“We’ve been focusing on [the Ivy League tournament],” Jackson stated when asked if she would use this week to prepare for it. “These matches are to get us ready for the Ivies. Improving is over, the only thing we can do on [tomorrow against Colgate] is try to play a good match with less errors than before and just try to get the reps that we need to be fresh.”
The Red returns to action tomorrow against Colgate in its last regular season match at 7 p.m. in Newman Arena.
Archived article by Katherine Granish