Volleyball spikes rival Brockport, falls to RIT

This past week was an exciting one for Geneseo women's volleyball team, as they won three of their four matches at Nazareth College over the weekend before losing to RIT on Tuesday.

On Friday, the Knights started off with an encouraging first game against conference foe SUNY Brockport in an exciting five-set match, 25-19, 13-25, 20-25, 25-14, 15-12.

"This was definitely the highlight of our weekend," said head coach Jen Salmon. "We've struggled in five-set matches, but the girls really had the momentum on their side and it carried us." She said she points specifically to the Knights' aggressive attitude and "play to win" mentality.

Junior Krista Frieling led the offensive charge for the Knights, tallying 10 kills. First-year Laura Galvin was a major contributor, recording 20 assists while senior Jessie Stephenson added 18 digs. It was a big win for Geneseo, as the women lost to the Golden Eagles in their previous tournament.

In their second match of the night, Geneseo defeated SUNY Cobleskill in three sets, 25-10, 25-22, 25-10. Again, Stephenson was a major contributor, recording nine kills while junior Joanne Smith added seven more. This victory set the Knights on course to take on host Nazareth, a team that also had previously defeated Geneseo. Once again Nazareth prevailed in three sets, 25-20, 25-17, 25-19.

"We didn't play with confidence and didn't play to our ability," Salmon said. Geneseo was overpowered by the Golden Flyers' offense, only managing 3.5 blocks throughout the entire match.

Smith added 10 more kills and senior Maddy Maler contributed 13 assists. Salmon said senior Laura Lobaugh, a defensive specialist who made the all-tournament team, was "a crutch who was there for us when we needed her."

The team managed to regroup, coming back to beat Keuka College, 21-25, 25-13, 25-18, 25-22 in the final match of the tournament. The match was a team effort with six players notching at least five kills.

Galvin recorded her second 20-assist game of the weekend, and Maler added 17 more. "I'm really excited for Laura's future," Salmon said. "She's only a freshman and plays at a very high level."

Tuesday's matchup for the Knights was tough as they traveled to RIT to take on the Tigers. Salmon said before the match that while she expected similar results, it would be a tough game for the Knights to win.

RIT had previously lost two matches to the Knights. It was senior night for the Tigers and they used that emotional advantage to upset the Knights in five sets, 25-23, 25-15, 21-25, 25-27, 15-13. Frieling and Stephenson were once again the offensive leaders for the Knights with 11 kills each.

Up next for the team is a tournament at SUNY Cortland on Saturday and a home game against Elmira College on Tuesday at 7 p.m.