Tue. May 28th, 2024

After starting the season 3-0 at the Kutztown Classic, the West Chester University woman’s volleyball remained unbeaten, advancing their record to 7-0 as the return home for their home opener.
 The Lady Rams played a double header on both Friday and Saturday afternoon as they played host to the Ram Fest Women’s Volleyball Tournament. They opened their Friday double header with a three sets to zero (25-10, 25-17, 25-16) victory over the University of the Sciences in Philadelphia. Freshmen standouts, Paige Thommes, Callie Krajcir, and Annalee Halbert, continued to impress at home after their outstanding performances at the Kutztown Classic. Halbert has taken the starting setter job in stride and continues to dominate the assist column for the Golden Rams getting 25 of the teams 34 total assists. Krajcir, a libero (defensive specialist) for the Lady Rams, led the team with 13 defensive digs. Thommes, in a platoon with the team’s veteran outside hitters, lead the team with 14 of 35 kills. Sophomore, Marina Sharkey, also had a dominant defensive match collecting 6 blocks.
 The second half of Friday’s double header saw WCU sweep Glenville State in three strait sets as well (25-16, 25-19, 26-24), even though they were forced into overtime in the third set. This match saw seniors, Allison Grammer and Dana Markol, step into the spotlight. Grammer led the teams offense with 8 kills, while Markol lead the team’s defense with 17 defensive digs bringing the team’s record to 5-0.
 The Golden Rams continued to dominate their home court on Saturday (with two more three sets to none victories). In the first of the two matches, WCU easily cruised passed Assumption College for their sixth consecutive victory. In the later half of the double header The Lady Rams took on Chestnut Hill College and claimed victory in consecutive sets 25-20, 25-15, and 20-18. On the first serve of the match, Krajcir’s floating serve found the floor getting the Rams off to a great start. Sharkey, who had 4 kills and 3 blocks, dominated the first set including a powerful kill right down the middle to close out the first.
 The second set started just as the first ended, with seemingly the same play, Sharkey crushed the ball at the center of Chestnut Hill’s defense who were not able to come up with the dig. The second set also saw another impressive WCU freshmen, Erica Engler, put down two Chestnut Hill returns in a row, barley letting the ball cross over to the Rams side of the net. Thommes closed out the second with a definitive block for her second block of the match. Sharkey continued her dominance with three more blocks, including two back to back, and three more kills in the third to bring her match totals to 6 blocks and 11 kills, both of which led the team.
 Halbert showed she has chemistry with many of the Golden Rams’ hitters distributing 33 assists. Halbert’s passing abilities really showed in the third set when she assisted on 17 of 25 WCU’s points as well as adding a kill of her own. She finished the match with 5 kills and 3 blocks. The Lady Rams next three matches are against Philadelphia University, Edinboro University of Pennsylvania, and Gannon University. Their opponents records combined to 9-9, with Edinboro looking particularly strong with a record of 5-3. Though West Chester has some tough opponents ahead of them, they will look to continue their unbeaten streak, play aggressively, deliver solid performances, and bring a championship home for the fans.
Stephen Gallo is a fourth-year student majoring in communication studies. He can be reached at SG 749536@wcupa.edu

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