Dominating front line carries volleyball to victory
Hofstra women’s volleyball team traveled to Williamsburg, Virginia on Friday, Oct. 26, at 7 p.m. to take on Colonial Athletic Association (CAA) rival William & Mary. The Pride made quick work of the Tribe, rolling past the squad in three sets (25-18, 25-22, 25-13).
Hofstra faced their biggest challenge of the match in the second set. The Pride were able to show grit after quickly falling behind 3-0. Junior Laura Masciullo battled back with a couple of kills in a 5-0 run to go up 5-3. Later in the set, the Pride went on another 5-0 run featuring kills by four key pieces to the Hofstra front line in Masciullo, Nanishka Perez, Doris Bogoje and Aisha Skinner. The quick spurt by the Pride resulted in a timeout by William & Mary head coach Tim Doyle.
The resilience of the Tribe showed when they went on a 5-0 run of their own behind two kills by William & Mary freshman Claire Farrell and a couple costly errors by Hofstra, pulling themselves within two points late in the set. However, after William & Mary’s Julia Brown got the Tribe within one at 23-22, a kill by Bogoje and a service ace by junior Luisa Sydlik resulted in an emphatic finish to the set by the Hofstra Pride.
Aside from the set winning kill, Sydlik recorded 35 assists in the match, which moves the German setter into fifth place all-time on the Hofstra assists leaderboard.
The play of the game was made by Hofstra libero Maddie Appleton, who earned the start for Emily Mansur’s squad and made her impact felt. The play came in the third set off of a block by the William & Mary front line. Appleton’s desperate dive toward the ground with her right hand saved the ball and floated it across the court, just over the net into an area free from William & Mary defenders. Appleton recorded both the dig and the kill on the play. She finished the game with 13 digs, an ace and three assists.
The Pride exhibited dominance throughout the match through their front line. Masciullo notched 14 kills, Bogoje had 10 on a stellar .714 hit percentage and Skinner, Perez and Michela Rucli each chipped in with seven, six and four kills respectively.
Hofstra improves to 18-7 (8-3 CAA) to maintain their No. 2 standing in the Colonial Athletic Conference. William & Mary drops to 5-15 (1-10 CAA) and is currently No. 9 in the CAA standings.
Up next, the Pride will take on Elon University on Sunday, Oct. 28 at 12 p.m. before going back home to face Charleston University on Thursday, Nov. 1.
William & Mary will face CAA-leading James Madison University on Friday, Nov. 2, at 7 p.m.
Image courtesy of Hofstra Athletics