The Seton Hall women’s volleyball team defeated Providence, 3-1, in an enthralling match on Friday evening, improving the team’s record to 9-18.
The Pirates and the Friars exchanged point for point in the opening serves of the first set. Each side was only able to hold a two-point lead until the Pirates made it 11-8 and found a groove that carried them to a 25-18 set win. Sophia Coffey and Elizabeth Sottung each contributed an ace in the opening set.
Momentum from the first set victory carried over to the opening serves of the second set, as the Pirates gained an 8-2 lead before Providence called a timeout. Following the timeout, however, Providence went on to draw level with Seton Hall at 13 before going on a five-point run to put itself ahead. The Pirates responded with their own resurgence, but the Friars went on to claim the set, 25-21.
Amanda Rachwal and Caitlin Koska led a defensively sound run in the third set, coming up big with pivotal blocks. Abby Thelen’s offensive prowess assured the Pirate capitalized on their dominance in the set. Thelen finished the set with a team-leading 13 kills as the Pirates claimed a 25-18 victory in the set.
After an extremely back-and-forth fight that produced 14 ties, the Pirates finally toppled the Friars 26-24 in the fourth set to seal the match.
Despite the win, the final set proved to be a much more difficult task than head coach Allison Yaeger would have liked.
“I feel like that fourth set should have been 25-9,” Yaeger said. “We gave them a lot of opportunity to fight back.”
Yaeger also went on to explain how she was frustrated by the opportunities her team missed with down balls, free balls, and overpasses.
The Pirates bounce back immediately with a game against Creighton on Saturday night. Yaeger sees the back-to-back matchup as a way to gain momentum heading into the final stretch of the season.
“Going into tomorrow’s game is an opportunity,” Yaeger said. “We have absolutely nothing to lose. When we played Creighton at Creighton we put up a good fight and that was in front of 3,000 people cheering against us. It’s not everyday you have a nationally ranked team come into your gym with an opportunity to take them down.”
Following the Creighton match on Nov. 3., the Pirates will play Saint John’s, Marquette and DePaul before beginning the Big East Tournament.
Justin Sousa can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.