St. Mary's Volleyball Splits Washington and Lee Tri-Match

Mimi Graf
Mimi Graf

Lexington, Va. – The St. Mary's College of Maryland volleyball team remained .500 on the season following their play Saturday afternoon at a tri-match hosted by Washington and Lee University with Bridgewater (Va.) College. The Seahawks picked up their fifth sweep of the season against Bridgewater before falling in four to Washington and Lee.

First-year head coach Jeremey Sands described the team in their first match, "The team came out strong against Bridgewater and won in a decisive 3-0 battle."

Sophomore Mimi Graf (Annapolis, Md./Broadneck) paced St. Mary's to the Bridgewater win with her third double-double of the season with 10 kills and 14 assists while adding four block assists for 12 points. Junior middle hitter Karlee Vaillant (Arnold, Md./Broadneck) also tallied 12 points with eight kills, three service aces and a pair of block assists.

As a team, the Seahawks (5-5) totaled 37 kills, 13 service aces, and 5.0 team blocks in besting Bridgewater, 55-35 in points. St. Mary's won the match with set scores of 25-19, 25-18, 25-19. Junior setter Grace Chao (Ellicott City, Md./Centennial) led the team with 19 helpers and four aces while contributing four digs.

No one for Bridgewater (4-10) put up double-digit kills but sophomore setter Shannon Skellchock (Germantown, Md./Clarksburg) had a double-double with 22 assists and 11 digs.

Sands continued, "Washington and Lee played a great game with a quick attack across the net. We matched their tempo for most of the match."

In the four-setter against Washington and Lee (14-1), the Seahawks dropped the first two sets, 25-22, 25-13 before rebounding with a 27-25 win in the third. W&L closed out its 13th consecutive win with a 25-9 triumph in the fourth.

Junior middle hitter Mandy Goodspeed (Columbia, Md./Atholton) and first-year Brigid Morris (Bethesda, Md./Walter Johnson) paced St. Mary's in the third-set victory with five and four kills, respectively. Goodspeed hit .625 in the set with no errors as the Seahawks overcame a 10-5 deficit with an 11-5 run for their first lead. The Generals reclaimed the lead at 25-24 but three straight points put the win on the SMCM side.

Goodspeed finished the match with a match- and season-best 13 kills as she hit .423 and added four block assists. Graf contributed 14 assists, eight kills, and seven digs while Morris ended with seven kills, four digs, and three block assists. Defensively, sophomore libero Carissa Hill (Lanham, Md./Pallotti) picked up a match-best 18 digs.

"Overall, I thought the team responded strong after a tough weekend. We worked hard on blocking all week and it really showed on the court," concluded Sands. "I was proud of our ladies for a good blocking performance in both matches."

St. Mary's will wrap up its month-long road trip at the 21st Annual Lycoming College Warrior Tip-Off Classic on September 26-27. The Seahawks will face Misericordia University and host Lycoming on Friday night at 6:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. before taking on Montclair State University and Penn College the next day at 10:00 a.m. and 12:00 p.m.

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