Volleyball Slams NCCU and CCSU to Win GW Invitational
Whyte Named MVP; Silva-Martin and Knox Named to All-Tournament Team
Sept. 3, 2011
WASHINGTON - The George Washington volleyball team used convincing 3-0 victories over both North Carolina Central and Central Connecticut State to win the GW Invitational on Saturday at the Charles E. Smith Center. The Colonials finished the tournament 3-0 without dropping a set.
With Saturday's victories the Colonials open the season with six consecutive wins for the first time since the 2003 season, when they started 10-0. Junior Lauren Whyte was named the tournament's Most Valuable Player while junior Candace Silva-Martin and senior MacKenzie Knox were named to the All-Tournament team.
Whyte was dominant over the duration of the tournament, totaling 34 kills (4.86/set) and hitting .256 for 36 total points (5.14/set) She also registered eight digs, four block assists and two service aces to garner MVP honors. Knox and Silva-Martin also shined for the Colonials. Silva-Martin registered 41 digs (5.25/set) with six assists and two aces while Knox hit .314 with 15 kills and two block assists.
In their first match of the day, the Colonials easily handled North Carolina Central, 3-0 in just over one hour. Set scores were 25-10, 25-15, 25-12. Freshman Christy Harper led all players with 12 kills on 18 attempts with just one error for a .611 attack percentage.
Junior Katie Crosby assisted on 29 of the Colonials 39 kills while also contributing three service aces, three digs and two block assists.
The Colonials were in complete control and never trailed throughout the three sets, holding the Eagles to a .000 attack percentage for the match. Additionally, the Colonials converted on an impressive 84 percent (33-for-39) of sideout point opportunities.
In the nightcap, the Colonials' momentum continued as they knocked off third-place Central Connecticut State, 3-0. Set scores were 25-14, 26-24, 25-19 to clinch the championship.
Whyte led all players, hitting .286 with a match-high 18 kills along with five digs and two block assists.
GW (6-0) ran out to an 11-3 lead in the first set before squandering the advantage, allowing Central Connecticut State to pull within three points at 13-10. The Colonials then settled down and used a blistering offensive pace, hitting .400 for the set, to go on a 12-4 to run to take the first frame 25-14.
The second set proved to be very similar to the first as once again the Colonials sprinted out to a substantial lead (16-10) before allowing the Blue Devils to stave of set point six times and eventually tie the score 24-24. A kill by Newman gave the Colonials a 25-24 lead and a defensive stop forced a CCSU error to clinch the second set 26-24.
The third set was the closest of the match as the teams exchanged the lead five times with nine ties before the Colonials pulled away to clinch the championship 25-19. The last tie came at 16-16 before sophomore Jamie Armstrong broke the stalemate with a solo block. Armstrong went on to collect three kills and a service ace down the stretch to help GW to victory. Armstrong finished the match seven kills against just one error (.500) with two service aces.
The Colonials will return to action on Friday when they travel south to Richmond, Va., to participate in the VCU/Third Degree Sportswear Invitational. GW will face North Carolina A&T on Friday at 5:00 p.m., Cornell on Saturday at noon and the host Rams at 5:00 p.m.
GW Invitational Final Standings