Volleyball | Hoyas Split Big East Games, Earn 1st Conference Win

FILE PHOTO: ELIZA MINEAUX FOR THE HOYA   Freshman outside hitter Alyssa Sinette recorded a match-high 20 kills in Georgetown’s four-set win over the Providence Friars. Sinette leads the Hoyas with 3.59 kills per set so far in the 2015 season.

FILE PHOTO: ELIZA MINEAUX FOR THE HOYA
Freshman outside hitter Alyssa Sinette recorded a match-high 20 kills in Georgetown’s four-set win over the Providence Friars. Sinette leads the Hoyas with 3.59 kills per set so far in the 2015 season.

The Georgetown volleyball team (7-10, 1-3 Big East) was on the road this weekend and secured its first Big East win of the season. Georgetown defeated Providence (9-9, 0-4 Big East) in Rhode Island on Friday before falling to St. John’s (12-7, 2-2 Big East) Saturday in New York.

The weekend started on a high, as the Hoyas took on the Friars in Alumni Hall. The match was hard-fought throughout, with both teams alternating impressive runs of play. The pivotal moment arrived in the second set, when Georgetown found itself trailing 17-10. A 9-2 run brought them level, and the Hoyas eventually managed to take the set 26-24, giving them a 2-0 lead. After dropping the third set, Georgetown rallied back from an 18-15 deficit in the fourth to take the match.

Freshman outside hitter Alyssa Sinnette, who impressed with a match-high 20 kills on a .235 hitting percentage, led Georgetown’s offense. After the match, Head Coach Arlisa Williams was effusive in praising Sinnette.

“Alyssa is a high-flying, go-get-it kind of athlete. She’s just got a desire to win. Everybody on the court knows that she’s going to get the ball, and she’s just able to terminate,” Williams said.

For her part, Sinnette was pleased with the victory and pointed out the importance of winning close sets like the first and second.

“It makes a huge difference — the momentum changes completely. … Whenever we did win those games, it was a lot of momentum for us, and it’s harder for the other team to fight back,” Sinnette said.

Senior outside hitter Lauren Saar, one of the team’s veterans, was impressed by the maturity Georgetown showed.

“One thing we did really well that match was consistency — we were able to sustain the good play throughout the entire match,” Saar said.

Georgetown continued its road trip in New York City, where it took on St. John’s at Carnesecca Arena. The Red Storm sprinted out to an early lead, using some well-timed runs to take the first set 25-17. However, the Hoyas responded immediately, harnessing a 7-1 run to take control of the second set and win 25-20.

St. John’s quickly rebounded and roared back into the lead, as an impressive display saw it wrap up the third set 25-14. The Hoyas seemed to particularly struggle with the Red Storm’s block.

Georgetown came out fighting in the fourth, and the two teams played a tense and closely fought set. The Hoyas pulled to within one point at 18-17, but that would be the closest they would come, as St. John’s eventually took the set 25-22.

While the result was not what the Hoyas were hoping for, Saar, who led the team with 11 kills and 10 digs against the Red Storm, preferred to focus on the positives of the weekend.

“Like I said with the Providence match, one of the positives that we had was sustaining. We were just a little up-and-down during the St. John’s match, especially in the second game, I think we played extremely well. If we can just learn to put all of the pieces together and do it all at one time, then I think we are going to be very successful,” Saar said.

Coach Williams agreed with Saar, also citing the second set as some of the best volleyball the team has played this season.

“Second set, they just flipped a switch, they turned it up. … We know that that’s in there, and our biggest challenge now is learning how to sustain it for long stretches,” Williams said.

Next up for the Hoyas is a trip to Omaha to take on Creighton (10-7, 4-0 Big East) Tuesday. Then, they face two games on Homecoming Weekend, first against Marquette (11-6, 3-2 Big East) Friday at 7 p.m. and then against DePaul (12-5, 1-4 Big East) at 2 p.m. Sunday. Both matches will be played in McDonough Arena.

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