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Women's volleyball began its weekend with a win in straight sets over Columbia

By Beverly Schaefer

The women’s volleyball team showed their strength over their Ivy League competitors this past weekend, facing Columbia on Friday and Cornell on Saturday and settling the weekend 2–0.

During the 3–0 (25–17, 25–19, 25–19) win against Columbia, junior Maggie O’Connell lead the offense with 13 kills. Sophomores Clare Lenihan and Alexa Underwood weren’t too far behind, with Lenihan adding eight kills and Underwood seven. Junior Jessie Harris set the offense up with a total of 31 assists for the match, keeping her standing with the most assists in the Ivy League and ranking eighth overall in the nation for assists per set. Harris was also one of three players with double-digit digs. Harris had 10, while freshman Cameron Dames added 14 and junior Devon Peterkin had 11. 

Dames currently sits with the fourth most digs per set for the Ivy League. She is the only first-year sitting in the top five and one of two first-years in the top 10 for this statistic.

The Tigers finished their weekend sweep with another 3–0 (25–23, 25–15, 25–18) win over Cornell. Both Lenihan and O’Connell had 10 kills, proving to be too much of an offensive force for the Bears. Dames finished the match with a team high of 19 digs while Harris added 11 for the defense. 

After coming off of a close first set, only winning by two, the Tigers pushed the Bears both offensively and defensively to finish the second and third sets with a clean win.

Peterkin commented on her team’s dynamic style of play. She said, “As the season progressed, the most notable improvement is our communication during practices and matches, especially for out-of-system plays. We have also tightened up our defensive grit. As a result, we are more comfortable playing together, which in turn has strengthened our team dynamic.”

Devon also explained that the Tigers have a simple goal of finishing the season strong. With the two matches coming up, Peterkin said, “We will continue to practice hard, internalize coach feedback both as a team and individually, analyze our opponents, and continue to rely on each other for support and encouragement. Together, all of these factors are essential for helping us prepare.”

The Orange and Black will finish off Ivy League conference play as they face Harvard this Friday and Dartmouth on Saturday. After the Dartmouth game, Peterkin explained, the Tigers will have a senior banquet to celebrate the seniors on the team. Devon said that they will be surrounded by their friends and family as they get to honor the women who have spent four years playing for Princeton. She is a junior, but she explained that she is also extremely excited for this night.

The Harvard and Dartmouth games will both be played in Dillon Gymnasium. Harvard with be at 7 p.m. on Friday with Dartmouth following at 5 p.m. on Saturday.

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