Volleyball gears up for SUNYAC play after competitive invitational games

The Geneseo volleyball team had a successful weekend at the Nazareth Invitational. The Knights faced Medaille College and Nazareth College on Friday Sept. 14 and they battled against Mount Union University and Keuka College on Saturday Sept. 15. Falling only to Mount Union, the team went 3-1 for the weekend.

Friday was a good showing for the Knights who ended the day undefeated. Against Medaille, junior outside hitter Grace Cergol had 15 kills and 12 digs, junior libero Sam Mendelsohn contributed 11 digs, first-year outside hitter Maddie McLaughlin swung for eight kills and sophomore middle blocker Bridget Lougen added six kills. Sophomore outside hitter Alexandra Frank dug 12 balls to help the Knights win 25-18, 26-24 and 25-17.

Later in the day, the Knights played an extremely exciting game against Nazareth College. With set match scores of 27-25, 25-19 and 25-18, the Knights swept the Golden Flyers. 

The energy in the gym from the fans and the bench players could be attributed to the crisp play by the six Knights on the court playing as one fluid unit. 

Sophomore middle blocker Kiersten Colvin and junior outside hitter Abby May both contributed six kills. First-year setter Morgan Michalski set up 34 assists and dug eight balls, Cergol had a double double with 14 kills and 12 digs, and Mendelsohn picked up 12 digs.

Junior setter Shea Casey was satisfied with the Knights showing against Nazareth this past weekend.

“Last season, we split with Nazareth, ending the season with a loss to a team we felt we should have beaten,” Casey said. “[Last year’s loss] pumped us up even more to come out and leave it on the floor.”

Saturday proved to be a tougher day for the Knights as they finished with a win and a loss. The set scores against Mount Union came out to 25-19, 25-15 and 25-16, with the Knights falling behind in all three games. 

Cergol muscled up 11 kills and seven digs. Michalski swung for two kills, set 19 assists and dug five balls. Lougen and May both added four kills and Mendelsohn had 19 digs. This was the only match that the Knights came up short on the weekend.

“Mount Union was our toughest game this past weekend because they are a very solid team overall,” Frank said. “It was more of a battle of who was playing the best all-around instead of picking on each other’s weaknesses.” 

The fourth and final game of the weekend at the Nazareth Invitational for the Knights was against Keuka College. Right from the start the Knights were in control with the first game with the score of 25-9. 

The last two games were evenly matched close games with scores of 25-21 for both. Cergol came close to another double double with eight kills and 10 digs. McLaughlin swung for nine kills, Mendelsohn dug seven balls, Michalski set for 24 assists and dug nine balls. Frank contributed five digs and Lougen had seven kills for the Knights.

This upcoming weekend, the Knights kick off SUNYAC play at SUNY Potsdam at 5 p.m. on Friday Sept. 21. On Saturday Sept. 22, The Knights face SUNY Oswego at Potsdam at 12 p.m on Saturday Sept. 22.

“If we play with the same intensity as our Nazareth match, I can confidently say we will go undefeated in SUNYAC pool play,” Casey said.