By: Brendan Burris ~Staff Writer~
The second half of Xavier volleyball’s season is in full swing. The Musketeers have opened the conference schedule with a 4-3 record with wins over Georgetown, Villanova, Providence and St. John’s.
The team’s Big East home opener against the Villanova Wildcats was an impressive 3-0 sweep on Oct. 3 (25-11, 25-19, 25-17).
Following two straight 3-1 home losses to Seton Hall and no. 21-ranked Marquette, the Musketeers took to the road for two away matchups against Providence and St. John’s.
The road trip proved to be quite the success for the team, dominated in two back-to-back wins while only losing one set. Freshman Kristen Massa provided the spark for the Musketeers recording 19 kills and five digs.
Currently, Xavier is ranked no. 54 in the country, the third-highest ranked Big East team, and is fifth in the conference.
With a strong conference season finish, the Musketeers could see themselves in the top-25 and earn a possible NCAA Tournament berth.
Overall, the team is 11-8, nine wins away from coach Mike Johnson’s sixth straight season of 20 wins or more.
Currently, Xavier has 11 games remaining in the Big East regular season (6 home, 5 away).
Included in those games are away matches versus the Butler Bulldogs, the Marquette Golden Eagles and the no. 41-ranked Creighton Bluejays at the Cintas Center.
Next, however, the Musketeers have a two-game homestand, starting with the DePaul Blue Demons on Oct. 14 and then Butler on Oct. 18.
Both games will be played at home, with the game against DePaul being labeled “Dig for a Cure.”
The first 100 fans and the first 100 students will receive a free pink t-shirt to raise awareness for breast cancer.
As the conference season hits full swing, the Musketeers look to continue their strong form through to the postseason in hopes of finishing high in the Big East.