By Tyler Wahl
The Framingham State Volleyball team came out on top against the Dean College Bulldogs in a 3-0 blowout Oct. 18.
The team focused on bouncing back in this match after their three-game win streak came to an end at the hands of WPI earlier in the week.
The Rams faced ofi against Dean once already this season, Framingham State also winning that match in a convincing 3-0 fashion.
Both teams came out sluggish in the first set. Serves from both sides were sloppy and
miscommunication seemed to be the main reason for a majority of the errors committed.
As the set continued, both teams started to pick up the pace. The Rams took the lead 12-9 early in the first set off some great digs from freshman Isabel Henwood and exceptional kills from sophomore Anna Szymanski.
The bulldogs stepped up their offensive game in the second half of the first set, eventually taking the lead 16-14 against the Rams, forcing 18-year Head Coach Richard Casali to take a timeout.
That timeout showed exactly why Casali has been head coach for so long, as the Rams went on to win the first set 25-16, only conceding two points following the timeout.
The Rams kicked off the second set with exceptional energy and confidence. Framingham State gained a quick 11-6 lead, boosting the team’s confidence even further.
At this point in the game, it became easy to see why the Rams were pulling ahead at such a fast rate. The team was constantly talking to each other, calling out mistakes, and encouraging one another.
“We played together as a team. ... It takes every single one of us in order to win and we really came together tonight,” said Szymanski.
After a quick timeout, Dean was able to put three points on the board off some hard fought kills and blocks.
Dean showed some fight in the middle of the second set, but it was no match for the Rams’ intensity. A few kills from freshman Valerie Sullivan made the score 22-12 FSU, with Henwood delivering the final blow to close the set 25-12.
Framingham State made a statement in the third set, shutting Dean down with an impressive 25-6 win.
The third set was one of the most impressive the Rams have had this season, quickly gaining the advantage 10-1 to start the set.
The bulldogs couldn’t counter the well-placed serves by the Rams. Framingham had an outstanding number of aces, finishing with eight in the third set alone.
Dean seemed deflated after conceding so many points off simple serves as the Rams continued to dominate for the rest of the set.
The Rams players had a genuine look of excitement and happiness after winning this game, and Assistant Coach Brian Gerard shared that feeling.
“If you watched the first set coming off the weekend, we might’ve been a little rusty there,” he said.
“But when we put things together and everybody’s talking and doing the things the coaches ask them to do, next thing you know it’s 25-6. Every game from this point on is a home match. ... So any win is going to build their confidence which will benefit us down the road,” he added.
The Rams also defeated Bridgewater in an intense 3-1 win on Wednesday, Oct. 20. The team looks to continue pushing their forward momentum against Fisher Saturday, Oct. 23.