Quakers fall to Generals in five-set battle


Kaylee Carr

Middle-back Vanessa Johnson watches the ball waiting for a serve from the Generals.

The Guilford College women’s volleyball team hosted a match against the Washington and Lee Generals Oct. 10. As the Quakers forced the Generals to five sets, they fell short and lost 3-2. 

“It’s easy to get anxious and worried before games, especially against other schools such as Washington and Lee,” said outside hitter Natalie Moore, a first-year student from Talbott, Tennessee. “We can practice blocking or practice defense and stuff like that just to prepare, but at the end of the day, whenever we play mentally relaxed is whenever we do our best…Whenever we think about what we are doing, we get really anxious, and then that’s when we begin to make mistakes.” 

Moore led the Quakers with a total of 12 kills against the Generals, earning 114 kills so far this season. Junior Vanessa Johnson and first-year Kaci Johnson followed just behind Moore with 11 and 10 kills against the Generals. 

“As a team, we have our moments when we do really well…We also have our moments when we have long runs…but for our team, Washington and Lee was completely beatable,” Moore said. “I think what got us in the end was just stamina. A lot of people ran out of gas, but we were also slow to fight back. Instead of starting out strong and then continuing to finish out strong, we started out strong, took some breaks, then started out strong again, and it just became a catch-up game that was a little too hard towards the end of the match.” 

“I thought it was a really close, hard fought game. I’m sad that it didn’t go our way, but overall I think we played and worked hard as a team,” said Lydia Saunders, a junior libero from Greensboro, North Carolina. Saunders finished the game against Washington and Lee with 17 digs, and and a total of 225 digs so far this season. 

“Personally, I think my serve receive could have been a little stronger,” Saunders said. “I think our team could have also been more consistent, continued to play our game and played fearlessly throughout the entirety of the game.”

As the Quakers were forced to a fifth and final set of the night, Washington and Lee led against the Quakers 8-1 as both teams switched to opposing sides of the court. Guilford attempted to make a comeback in the fifth set, but the Generals’ lead was too high, and they won the set by 15-9 and the match 3-2. 

“I think we could have been able to finish a game better by working together and trusting one another more,” Saunders said. “I believe we have built a strong foundation for next year and as long as we continue to build a strong positive team culture, practice hard, and get to know the person we will be playing next to better, then we can have a great next season.”