The Lady Don’s faced a tough final round loss this past weekend, when they hosted the Asics/Coca Cola Invitational on the Hilltop. On Friday, the Lady Dons beat Sacramento State 3 sets to 0 and Villanova on Saturday 3 – 1. But the team fell to Miami in their last game on Saturday going 5 sets and losing 3 – 2.
In the first set, it was close for most of the set. The Lady Dons took a big lead by going up 15 – 10. However, at the end of the set, the Lady Dons gained confidence and played well; they won the set 25 – 13. In the second set, the Lady Dons also took advantage of a big lead by going up 8 to 2 early in the set. The Lady Dons held onto the lead and they won 25 – 12. In the third set it was close, but the Lady Dons still had the advantage. Unlike in the first set, Sacramento State tried to keep close, but the Lady Dons won the third set 25 – 20. Senior middle blocker Carly Babin gave the Lady Dons 10 kills and four blocks, including one solo. Senior outside hitter Addie Webster added nine kills, seven digs and three blocks (one solo). Junior libero Haley Caroll gave the Lady Dons 18 digs, and senior middle blocker Alix Gombos added eight kills as well as four blocks.
In their first match on Saturday, the Lady Dons beat Villanova 3 sets to 1. In the beginning of the first set, the Lady Dons looked weary and they did not get off to a good start. Throughout the rest of the set, the Lady Dons began to play better and won the set 25 – 20. The Lady Dons kept the second set close, until Villanova pulled ahead 20 – 18. The Lady Dons were unable to pull ahead and they lost 25 – 22. The momentum changed in the third set; the Lady Dons knew that they needed to win this set. This showed as the Lady Dons gained an early lead and they held onto to this lead to win 25 – 21. In winning the third set, the Lady Dons were hungry to win the match. However, this was not shown, as they were behind for most of the match. It was not until late in the set in which they gained the lead. Holding onto this momentum, the Lady Dons went on to win the set 25 – 14. Carly Babin had 17 kills this match while senior middle blocker Alix Gombos had nine kills with four blocks (including one solo) and Haley Carroll had 15 digs.
The Lady Dons lost to Miami in five sets in their second match on Saturday. In the first set, the Lady Dons opened up a big lead, going up 10 – 2, and lead to win 25 – 14. Even though the Lady Dons played well in the first set, they were outmatched in the second set. Miami opened a big lead 8 to 2, and later won the set 25 – 19. The Lady Dons also were outmatched in the third set when Miami opened a 5 – 0 lead, which Miami won 25 – 17. In the fourth set, the Lady Dons got their act together and played a close set; the Lady Dons won 25 – 21. In the fifth set, the Lady Dons gained an early lead but did not hold onto it and lost the set 15 – 10. Sarah Mandala added 21 kills and three blocks while Haley Carroll added 31 digs and five aces; both earned all-tournament honors.
The next home games for the Lady Dons will be on September 26, when they host University of Pennsylvania, and September 27, hosting Seattle University; both games are at 7 p.m.