In a thrilling showdown on their home court, the Muhlenberg volleyball team emerged victorious against Washington College with a decisive 3-1 win. The Mules displayed outstanding teamwork and remarkable serving, which made the home finale, and Senior Day, a memorable afternoon for both players and fans.
The team was well prepared for this game, which showed in the result.
“We placed a great deal of importance on the serve and pass as it is the foundation of a match,” said Captain Julia Ficon ‘24. “We have added a lot more combo plays to our offense and focused on getting comfortable using unconventional offensive schemes like a back-row attacker.”
Moving into this match, the Mules were serious about their strategy.
“We’ve been working a lot in practice refining our communication and eliminating mental mistakes,” said Isabella Pontrelli ‘24. “We’re also working on switching up our serve receive plays to be less predictable on offense and increase first ball kills to shorten service runs on us.”
The precision and focus in practice transferred to the court and allowed for special performances come game time. Christina Marcin ‘26 hit a career-high of 25 kills, the most in one match by a Mule since 2004.
After splitting the first two sets, Muhlenberg grabbed a 10-0 lead in the third set behind the serving of Jenny Ryan ‘27. The Mules took a 2-1 set lead with a 25-15 win. Then, a 7-0 run with Ficon serving in the fourth set led Muhlenberg to finish the match with a 25-18 win.
As of Oct. 28, the Mules (13-9, 3-5) are tied for seventh place in the Centennial Conference standings. They still have to face the teams in fifth (Haverford) and sixth (Dickinson). The top six teams qualify for the playoffs, and with the Washington win under their belt, the Mules are still in the running for a playoff spot.
The team has shown tremendous growth and success throughout this season. They’ve adapted to challenges and even saw excellent contributions from the younger players.
“We’ve done a good job adjusting to our relatively low number of healthy players this season,” says Pontrelli. “It’s been great having a bunch of first years who are excited to contribute in whatever way they can, and returners have been able to draw upon their experience to help us move forward in conference play.”
“I am very proud of the effort we have put forth this season; we have gone up against numerous regionally and nationally ranked teams and proven ourselves as competitors,” says Ficon. “While some of those games have been losses, the team has worked incredibly hard in matches and has worked to correct errors and problems that arise when playing tough competition.”
With each victory, the Mules continue to show their commitment to excellence, sportsmanship and teamwork. Stay tuned for more thrilling action as the Volleyball team takes on Dickinson on Nov. 4, at 1:00 p.m.