Quinnipiac volleyball wins Wednesday night matchup over Marist


Photo Courtesy: Quinnipiac Athletics

DaMarco Walker and Eric Kerr

Highlight By: Eric Kerr

Story By: DaMarco Walker

In the final match of a three game home-stand the Bobcats were looking for revenge against a Marist team that beat them earlier this season.

In their first meeting on Sept. 22 the Marist Red Foxes bested the Quinnipiac Bobcats in four sets. The game was decided in the same amount of sets this time, however the Bobcats were the ones logging a win in the left column.

The beginning of the game wasn’t scripted too much in the favor of Quinnipiac.

“I think it was a matter of getting going, getting our offense,” senior middle blocker Kaleigh Oates said. “We have some huge arms in the front row that we need to get the setter connection down. I think once we got that and Marist came out a little hot, we settled in and focused on our style of play a little more.”

The Red Foxes came out firing on all cylinders. Quinnipiac had a hard time getting under and returning the tremendous swings from Marist. The Bobcats found themselves desperately running around trying to field the spikes that the Red Foxes were dishing out during the first set, with Marist ultimately winning the set 25-18.

Just like Oates mentioned, Quinnipiac found its groove and went toe-to-toe with the still-hot Red Foxes. This time, the Bobcats refused to be denied. If they weren’t crowding the net for blocks or laying out for point-saving digs, they were taking massive swings at the ball. Neither team led by more than two points. Both teams handed the lead back and forth for a grand total of 14 times all the way to 24-24. With the fate of the set on the line, the Bobcats locked in and secured the final two points needed to tie the match at 1-1.

At the start of the third set it was the Bobcats’ turn to come out in full effect. A 12-4 run changed the score from 1-1 to 13-5. Even as they started to marginally cool off, Quinnipiac kept pouring on points, never letting Marist tie the score at any point in the third set.

The fourth set was more of the same. The Red Foxes never could corral the lead. The most they were able to do was tie the score but even that didn’t last for long. Nothing could rattle the almost trance-like focus they had even when the official stopped play to reverse a scoring call. The Bobcats scored on the very next play; setting up outside hitter Maggie Baker to score the final four points securing the set and match for her team.

High pressure game-winning situations aren’t uncommon to the sophomore from California.

“When I was younger, club or high school, that was kind of the role I was put into and again this year that role was reintroduced. I really enjoy it and I want to embrace it as much as I can. It feels pretty natural. Just helping the team is what I’m meant to do,” Baker said.

After winning two out of three for the home-stand against conference foes, the Bobcats are gaining ground in the conference. Even with that in mind, head coach Kyle Robinson is looking forward to the future.

“Like any win we appreciate the wins, but we don’t take it for granted and we get in the gym tomorrow and we keep working hard and move on to Rider and Saint Peter’s this weekend,” Robinson said.

The Bobcats resume conference play Saturday against Rider at the Alumni Gymnasium in Lawrenceville, New Jersey. Then, they stay in New Jersey to face Saint Peter’s at the Yanitelli Center Sunday.