LYNDONVILLE, Vt. - The Green Mountain College women's volleyball team extended its season in dramatic fashion on Saturday afternoon, as the Eagles picked up a pair of important victories over Lyndon State College and Johnson State College. Lyndon played host to a North Atlantic Conference quad match in which the Hornets, Spartans, Eagles, and Johnson State College Badgers were competing for the final two spots in the NAC playoffs.
Green Mountain 3, Lyndon 0
The final playoff berth came down to the day's third match between Green Mountain and Lyndon. The visiting Eagles jumped out to a 9-1 lead right away in the first set, as Caroline Gay (West Palm Beach, FL) notched four aces. The Hornets never recovered, as Green Mountain went on to a 25-9 win.
Meghan Campo opened up the second set with a kill, and Faith Richard followed with five consecutive aces as the Hornets jumped out to a 6-0 lead. With Lyndon leading 11-6, Green Mountain was able to turn the set around by running off the next 12 points behind the service of Keegan Blom-Hill (Hagerstown, Md.). The Eagles maintained a comfortable cushion the remainder of the set and went on to a 25-13 win.
Lyndon was able to take the early lead again in set three behind a pair of kills from Paige Quesnel and Madeline DeGroot and an ace from Richard. The advantage would be short lived, however. With Lyndon leading 7-6, Green Mountain went on a 7-0 run, highlighted by back-to-back kills from Estela Felix Almeida (South Gate, Calif.). Lyndon would never get back in it from there, as the Eagles closed out the match and locked up the final playoff berth with a 25-11 win.
Green Mountain posted its best offensive line of the season in the win hitting .415 collectively as a team. Felix Almeida hit at a .438 clip en route to recording a game-high eight kills while Blom-Hill registered five kills and six service aces. Nancy Olmedo-Chavez (Poughkeepsie, N.Y.). Gay was credited with 17 aces to lead Green Mountain while also acing the Hornets on serve eight times. Kali Bushey (Rouses Point, N.Y.) topped all Eagle servers with nine aces while Madison Wheeler (Lyndeborough, N.H.) paced the defense with four digs.
Green Mountain 3, Johnson 0
The final scheduled match never took place. Green Mountain was awarded the forfeit win, as the earlier Johnson injury left the Badgers unable to field a complete team.
The Hornets close out the 2017 season with a 2-17 overall record and a 1-6 mark in NAC play. Castleton improved to 7-14, 3-4 in conference, while Green Mountain is now 5-14, 2-5, and Johnson closes out their season at 0-20, 0-7.
The Eagles drew a tough Colby-Sawyer College team in the quarterfinal round of the NAC Championship and will head there on Saturday, October 28th with the time to be announced. This will be the first time the women's volleyball team has reached the NAC playoffs since 2014.