The Dayton Flyers volleyball team (picture from 2015) returned to Frericks Center with a win over Duquesne in four sets Friday night. Photo courtesy of Flyer News.
Sports Staff Writer
The Dayton Flyers volleyball team defeated Duquesne in four sets Friday, winning 3-1.
It was a great game for their home opener, and they started strong in the first set with consistent blocks. Specifically, the triple middle block that was an impenetrable wall to the Dukes.
With two consecutive blocks from the front row players, Duquesne called a time out after the Flyers scored to make it 15-11. Dayton was able to keep a lead the whole time with the hitters picking smart locations for their kills. Switching up between short and deep offensive points, the Flyers won the first set 25-16.
The second set was another win with their outside hitter, junior Jamie Peterson, who did a great job at avoiding the Duke’s block. With nice foot work, and a calm and collected finish, she managed to keep giving steady points for her team.
The strong front row, as talented as they are, also had major help from their dependable backrow. Freshman Lexie Almodovar had a strong back row attack making it 13-8.
Dayton’s defensive specialists really showed up this set, saving the ball multiple times to keep in play. Junior libero Maura Collins did a notable job covering the block, and pushing it nicely to the setter. With the front and back row working easily together, they took another set 25-15.
The Dukes managed to make a comeback in the third set, and began getting their points from more than just Flyer errors. It was a much tighter game after Duquesne figured out how to hit through and around Dayton’s front row.
Duquesne had a nice pancake to save the ball, leading to them tying the game 24-24. However, the Flyer’s weren’t going to give up that easily. The women were able to take advantage of deep shots to the back corner for more points near the end. Both teams needed to win by two, but it ended up being a Duquesne win, 28-26, from a tip to the pit.
Although Duquesne began the fourth set in the lead, Dayton managed to figure out where the Dukes left major holes. Senior setter Bridget Doherty was a major stand out in the final set, and had crucial tips over the blocks. It is because of small ball skills like Doherty’s push to the back corner that the Flyers were able to get a lead 18-16 in the final set. With Duquesne’s struggle to cover the back of the court, Dayton won 25-17.
This upcoming week, the Flyers play again this Friday against Davidson at home. Coach Tim Horsmon is confident in his team’s ability to work together, despite it being a good mix of old and young players.
“We’re pretty banged up and will have new players on the floor,” Horsmon said. “And some playing out of position so we just want to be consistent in the things we are good at and have our leaders take charge.”
The lower and upperclassmen worked extremely well this past week against Duquesne, and the talent on the team showed. Come out March 6 at 5 p.m. to see them come together just as effectively.