Xavier goes undefeated in weekend Big East play

By Ryan Hulligan, Staff Writer

Xavier women’s volleyball started off Big East play strong with two 3-0 wins versus Georgetown and Villanova over the weekend. The Musketeers had plenty of momentum from their two previous wins heading into this weekend’s set of games against two tough Big East competitors.

The Musketeers came out strong in the first set against Villanova. Senior right side/setter Carrigan O’Reilly was doing it all, assisting her teammates on some major kills and picking a few up for herself. Carrigan led Xavier to an early 6-3 lead and helped push it to 10-4 with help from junior libero Stevie Wolf. The two found themselves setting senior outside hitter Brooklyn Cink several times as she got the ball down on Villanova’s side numerous times in the first set. The Musketeers were able to keep a safe distance from Villanova as they closed the first set out winning 25-19.

Wolf, O’Reilly and Cink came out strong again in the second set, combining for the team’s first five points. As Villanova started to take the lead, junior middle blocker Delaney Hogan decided to step up and get a few kills on the board for Xavier. After several errors on the Wildcat’s end and a kill by Cink, the teams were tied up at 19. This time it was sophomore outside hitter Anna Taylor’s turn to get the Musketeer’s another point on the board. With Taylor’s hit, the Musketeers took the 20-19 lead and didn’t look back. They went on to win the set 25-21.

The third set wasn’t much different from the first, except this time senior outside hitter MaryAnn O’Toole got her fair share of points, picking her spots with perfection. O’Toole and Taylor were dominant in this set, accounting for a good chunk of the Musketeer’s points. Xavier won the set 25-19 and won the match 3-0 for the huge Big East win.

Back in Cintas on Sept. 25, Xavier took on Georgetown for their second conference game of the week. O’Toole, Cink and Taylor all came out strong, leading Xavier to an early 4-1 lead. After a few errors from the Bulldogs and several kills from Taylor, the Musketeers pushed their lead to 11-4. Even though they had a fairly daunting lead, Hogan and Carrigan kept the intensity going to finish out the set. Georgetown ended the first set with a whopping twelve points compared to Xavier’s 25.

The Bulldog’s were much more eager coming into the second set. They managed to keep the score tight for a solid 12 points, but then Cink and O’Toole took matters into their own hands with help from junior middle blocker Hunter Fry and several errors from the Bulldogs. Holding Georgetown to just four more points for the rest of the set, Xavier won the second set 25-16.

Xavier jumped the gun this set, not allowing Georgetown any hope for a win. O’Toole, Hunter, Cink and Taylor all showed out this set, putting the ball away with ease. The Bulldog’s lack of points were a result of their own errors and amazing defense from Xavier’s Carrigan and sophomore defensive specialist Lucia Corsaro. The Musketeers utterly shut the game down with a huge 25-10 win for the third set, and again, winning the whole match 3-0.

The Musketeer’s will be looking to keep their win streak going with two more Big East games this week against Creighton on Wednesday and Butler University on Sunday.