Volleyball’s final games of the year will make or break their playoff chances and the team is feeling the pressure. Luckily, history was on the Cards’ side this Wednesday, as Wesleyan took a 7-3 out of conference record into their last non-conference game of the 2010-11 season against Eastern Connecticut State. The hotly contested match marked the third win in a row for Wesleyan, with a score of 3-1 (25-15,26-28,25-15,25-23), as the team continues to dominate non-conference opponents.

Momentum is important in sports, especially when coming into the most important part of the season. The Cardinals put in the effort and built for the playoff push to come, winning a close match against a tough non-NESCAC team, which included the longest set that they have played all year (the 26 to 28 lost second set).

The Cardinals played very strong throughout, and seem to be stepping up to the plate just in time. Statistically, the team put up some impressive numbers, with help coming from an increasing number of different sources. AlissaSantucci ’12 and Casey Reed ’12 led the Cardinals with 13 kills apiece, while Kim Farris ’14, Lesl Faulkner ’11, and Monica Leslie ’14 all contributed to the offense in a big way, with six, nine, and seven kills, respectively.

The team also played great defense, led by Ruby Hernandez ’11 who put up a whopping 30 digs, and the work of Farris and Lesley, who contributed 8 and 7 blocks, respectively. Setter Laura Yim ’13 again provided the offensive backbone with a season high 48 assists.  This win was also the 450th for 26-year head coach Gale Lackey, 437 of which were recorded while coaching at Wesleyan.

Even after this impressive third win in a row, the season remains on life support for the Cardinals, who are now in the unenviable position of having to win both of their remaining NESCAC games this weekend in order to ensure a playoff berth. They are currently on the outside looking in, 1.5 games behind the Bates Bobcats, who they must beat tomorrow to have any hope of continuing on to post-season play. Even beating Bates will not secure them a spot; in order to do that they must win a game against a beatable Colby team this Saturday.

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