Volleyball Comes Back on Xavier, 3-2
Oct. 11, 2003
WASHINGTON, DC - For the second time in its last three matches, the George Washington volleyball team came from the precipice of defeat to win an A-10 match in five games. Saturday night the victim was Xavier as the Colonials prevailed 26-30, 26-30, 30-17, 30-28, 15-12, in a two-hour, 12-minute classic battle at Smith Center. The Colonials also defeated Rhode Island in similar fashion a week ago after losing the first two games.
Coming off its first A-10 loss of the season Friday to Dayton, GW aimed to get back on the winning track against a Xavier squad that lost at Duquesne in five games Friday in Pittsburgh. The Musketeers showed no signs of fatigue, however, as they came out strong winning the first two games by identical four-point margins.
After the 10-minute break, GW took charge in game three and raced out to a 15-4 lead. Xavier closed to within eight at 23-15 but could get no closer and GW breezed to the 30-17 win.
Game four was a nailbiter with neither team gaining more than a five-point advantage. With the score knotted at 26-26, GW senior Ruth Lazzari pounded one of her season-high 25 kills and fellow senior Sarah Hokom sandwiched two kills around a kill by Xavier's Kate Duchek for a 29-27 GW advantage. A kill by XU's Astyn Bjorklund made it 29-28 before GW's Katie Downey slammed a kill for the victory.
GW got the upper hand early in the decisive fifth game with a 5-2 lead before Xavier chipped away and tied the game at 8-8 and again at 10-10. Again, GW's Lazzari came through with two crucial kills followed by a Lauren Dunning service ace to put GW up 13-10. After a GW attack error, the Colonials got consecutive kills from Hokom and freshman Juliene McLaughlin for the dramatic victory.
Lazzari hit .279 for the match with 25 kills in 61 swings at 13 digs for her ninth double-double of the season. Downey hit .500 with 16 kills in 28 attacks with just two errors and five block assists.
Xavier (7-11, 1-3 A-10) was led by Duchek's 20 kills and Jordan Brightwell's match-high 19 digs. As a team, GW hit .251 (86-32-215) compared to .221 (64-22-190) for Xavier. The Colonials also scored nine points on service aces compared to four aces for Xavier.
GW (15-3, 4-1 A-10) travels to Philadelphia Friday to play Temple in a 7 p.m. match. The Colonials remain in Philadelphia to take on La Salle Saturday at 5 p.m.