WOMEN’S VOLLEYBALL BECOMES WINNINGEST TEAM IN PROGRAM HISTORY

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WOMEN’S VOLLEYBALL BECOMES WINNINGEST TEAM IN PROGRAM HISTORY

Mitch Bruhwiler / Photo Editor

Mitch Bruhwiler / Photo Editor

Mitch Bruhwiler / Photo Editor

Mitch Bruhwiler / Photo Editor

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Suffolk Athletic history was made over the weekend when the Rams beat St. Joseph’s College of Maine to become the winningest team in program history (19 wins).

In a doubleheader on Saturday, Suffolk lost their first match to Simmons College, later triumphing over St. Joe’s in a five-set battle. They took the first two sets, lost the third and fourth 21-25, and secured the victory with a score of 15-11 in the final set.

At this point in the season, the Rams were more than capable of playing under stressful circumstances such as these. The team is 7-0 in five set matches this year.

“Being in this predicament multiple times within the season, it’s as if our team automatically knows what to do when we get to five sets,” said junior Dakhensey Marcellus. “We’re not comfortable; we’re confident.”

Because of the team’s history of fifth set dominance, some players were not surprised when history was broken.

“When we won the last set I wasn’t surprised,” said senior Kaleigh Khanna. “I was very confident we were going to win the fifth set but I was really proud of [us]. Something about fifth sets really gets our team going.”

Last year was a very different outcome for the Lady Rams. The 2018 team finished with a record of 12-17, despite having a conference record of 7-5. Team captain Hannah Fabiano said last season was a major motivating force for this year.

“As a team we were tired of other teams not taking us seriously,” said Fabiano. “We knew at the start of this season that we wanted to start being a team that other teams were scared to play, and we took pride in that.”

Fabiano attributed the major turnaround to the chemistry that the team as a whole. The historic accomplishment happened to fall on senior day. The seniors on the team said that their success is the result of major changes in the program throughout their time at Suffolk.

“We’ve built a reputation in this league as a team that is going to give you a fight,” said captain Sarah Mullahy. “I don’t think there’s any team we face that we aren’t capable of beating.”

Mullahy also attributed the level of success to the coaching staff. Head Coach Scott Blanchard is in just his second year with the team.

“Coach Blanchard made changes to this program that have really taken us to that ‘elite’ level,” said Mullahy. “We recruit heavily, we play top ranked teams, and we are given all the tools we need to succeed.”

The Rams are riding the wave of victory into the playoffs, but being the winningest team in program history isn’t enough for them.

“We have a saying on this team we like to use, ‘we didn’t come this far just to come this far,’” said Mullahy. “We reiterate that after every goal we check of the list, and we’ll continue to do that through playoffs. We feel confident in our capabilities and we’ve proved it to ourselves day in and day out this season.”

The Rams started their run in the Great Northeast Athletic Confernece tournament with a 3-0 win over Colby Sawyer Tuesday night. They will face the No. 1 seed Johnson and Wales in the Semifinals on Thursday in Providence.

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