By Andrea Garcia
Volleyball rounded out this Homecoming weekend with a conference win against the La Salle Explorers and a loss to the Duquesne Dukes. After three losses the previous week, the split weekend should give the Rams some momentum.
Fordham got off to an early 8-3 lead from a series of La Salle errors. The Rams evened out the box score for the Explorers with two hitting errors, effectively closing the gap to 10-8 in Fordham’s favor. The Rams then went on their second four-point run of the game. LaSalle continued to trail close behind and held out to a 25-18 loss to Fordham.
The second set opened on a La Salle serve, and the visitors latched onto a three-point lead off of three Fordham hitting errors. The Rams crept up on La Salle’s lead, but couldn’t keep the serve to close off another win. La Salle picked up their first winning set on a tightly contested 25-22.
The teams kept siding each other out in the first half of the third set, and La Salle finally took on a three-point run at the halfway mark, evening out the score at 14 each. At the 16-6 mark, the Rams took the Explorers for a four-point run, secured by a Fordham kill and ace, and two La Salle errors. Secure at 19-16, the Rams finished off their second winning set at 25-20.
The teams kept a tight box score in the fourth and final set, until momentum picked up on the Rams’ side of the net with a six point run, carrying them to a 17-10 lead. They held onto their lead and won their last set 25-16.
Sunday’s match also took four sets to complete, but unfortunately, the Rams couldn’t pull through to contest the Dukes for a second straight winning match. The first set was a tight win for Duquesne, only pushing ahead for a definitive win in the last three kills from their offensive players. While the Dukes seemed to control the court with an early 8-3 lead, the Rams were ready to fight back and tied up at the 17-17 mark, and again at 21-21. A Fordham kill and an ace, paired with two errors from Duquesne, closed out a winning set for Fordham. The third set marked off an easy win for the Dukes, with a series of errors from the Rams. Duquesne never questioned their lead, and walked off the court with a 25-14 win under their belt.
With only one more set to win the match, the Dukes charged on and took advantage of a major five-point run early in the set, securing a lead at 9-5. The Rams did their best to change the swing of the game, but couldn’t keep the service for more than one play. Although finally hitting a three-point run to catch up at 16-13, Duquesne proved the strength of their starting hitters, while Fordham’s hitters tallied up repeat hitting errors in the final set, contributing to the Duke’s third winning set. The final set finished at 25-20.
The Rams will travel south this week for two more conference games. They will face off against the George Washington Colonials on Friday and the George Mason Patriots on Saturday.