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Smashing win at women’s volleyball home opener

Photo credit: Marta Keirkus

The Gee-Gees women’s volleyball squad did not disappoint during their Oct. 25 home opener as they beat McMaster University in three straight sets.

The McMaster Marauders came into the match with an early-season winning streak from a hard-working, determined team. But the Gees had an impressive pre-season, dominating other squads at the pre-season tournament and showing they were ready to fight for points. Having already defeated McMaster earlier this year, Ottawa came into this game with optimism and strength.

Despite allowing some early points to their opponents, the Gees quickly fought back to be in the winning position, and rarely lost it throughout the match. Their offence was strong and their play clever, with good communication and spacing on court.

Head coach Lionel Woods said his team always loves playing McMaster due to their never give up attitude. “We have so much respect for them,” said Woods.

“They played really well and then we just didn’t break. We just kept playing solid, and if anything, maybe picked up our speed as we went.”

In the second set, the Gees put lots of pressure on the Marauders, forcing some sloppy play with many balls going out of the court. The Marauders fought back valiantly, showing considerable skill, but it was a case of too little, too late. The Gees didn’t let up until the game was over and they got to celebrate a 25-18 win.

“We worked hard at passing every ball the way we wanted to, hitting every ball the way we wanted to, just everything really, step by step,” said fourth-year middle Alix Durivage.

“Last weekend was kind of a reality check, we realized we were going to have to work hard to maintain the level we’re at,”Durivage added, referring to the team’s two losses against York and Nipissing.

The team certainly seemed to be working well together, a quality of play Woods had been enforcing all week.

“We never looked broken or looked unconfident and that’s everything for us,” he said. “If we can keep our setter in the middle of the court then it’s very tough to pay attention to all our weapons.”

Second-year left side hitter Kaly Soro said team support really helped their morale.

Read more about Kaly Soro: Meet a Gee-Gee

“Huge thanks to our men’s volleyball team for coming out and being loud,” she said. “We don’t get that all the time and it’s really nice to have that for our home opener.’

Soro said the team still needs to improve on the process of the game by taking care of the little technical things first.

“We really want to take it one by one and focus on everything that we could improve in a little rally compared to a big one,” she said.