Blue Hens Claim 10th Straight and the CAA Regular Season Championship with 3-0 Win over William & Mary
November 6, 2010
Photo Courtesy of Mark Campbell
WILLIAMSBURG, Va. - - The Colonial Athletic Association postseason volleyball tournament is coming to Newark, as the University of Delaware volleyball team defeated William & Mary, 3-0, giving the Blue Hens 10 straight victories and at least a share of the regular season championship, Saturday night in Kaplan Arena. Set scores for the match were 25-22, 25-22 and 25-13.
With the win, the Blue Hens (22-5, 11-1 CAA) stand two games ahead of second place George Mason, with two games to play. Since Delaware defeated George Mason in the teams only meeting this year, the Blue Hens hold the tiebreaker over the Patriots.
Paige Erickson (at right) paced the Blue Hen attack, recording a match high 14 kills on 24 attempts, committing only two errors, totaling a .500 hitting percentage. She also had a match high five blocks, recording four block assists and a solo block. Alissa Alker was the only other Blue Hen to reach double-digit kills with 11.
Seniors Jess Chason and Greta Gibboney continued their outstanding campaign as Chason gained 35 more assists, while Gibboney finished with 30 digs to lead the defense. Kim Stewart was the only other Blue Hen to reach double figures in digs with 11.
Ginny Bray led the Tribe (10-15, 4-9 CAA) tallying 11 kills and adding two block assists. Cassie Crumal passed out 32 assists while Gina Lang paced the defense with 17 digs and two block assists. Lang also added seven kills for William & Mary.
The Hens got off to a slow start in the match, trailing most of the early part of the first set. They found themselves down by as many as five on several different occasions, and as late as 14-9. But Delaware made its patented mid game run, ripping off six straight and eight of the next nine points to grab a 17-15 lead. After a brief tie, the Blue Hens took the lead for good in the first set at 18-17, taking their biggest lead at 24-20. They were able to finish off the Tribe with a kill from Alker, 25-22.
The second set started better for the Hens, as they jumped out to a quick 3-0 lead with kills from Alker and Stewart. They had their largest lead of the set at 10-6 but could never pull away from the Tribe. They connected on three straight points on what looked to be a momentum shift, but the Tribe called a time-out and was able to score the next point to close it to 14-13. The Tribe kept fighting, as they eventually retook the lead at 21-20. But after a service error from Delaney Gordon and a kill by Erickson, Delaware reclaimed the lead for good at 23-22. A solo block by Erickson and an attack error by Lang gave the Hens the set, 25-22.
The third set started in a back-and-forth fashion, as either team did not have more than a one-point lead through the first 14 points. The Blue Hens then scored the net three points, and six of the next seven points to take the advantage and the momentum, 13-8. Now leading 15-11, a kill by Stewart started an eight-point swing for the Hens, on the strength of a balanced Delaware attack. The final touch was a block by Chason and Erickson, giving the Hens a 22-12 lead. Freshman Karina Evans finished off the Tribe with her final kill, ending the set and the match, 25-13.
Delaware returns home for the final regular season weekend on November 12 and 13. The team welcomes UNC Wilmington on Friday, and Georgia State on Saturday. Both games are scheduled for a 7 p.m. start.
Delaware def. William & Mary, 3-0 (25-22, 25-22, 25-13)
Delaware (kills-assists-digs): Erickson (14-0-1), Stewart (7-2-11), Dennehy (7-0-7), Chason (2-35-8), Alker (11-1-4), Evans (2-1-0), Rosehill (0-1-1), Hank (3-0-1), Gibboney (0-4-30), Lawrence (0-0-0).
William & Mary: Lang (7-0-17), Skipper (6-1-7), Kresch (9-0-4), Bray (11-0-0), Gordon (0-0-7), Crumal (2-32-8), Dorff (4-0-0), Alasomuka (0-3-9), Ciaccio (0-0-0)
Total Team Blocks: Delaware 8, William & Mary 3