Cortland, NY - In the middle of the season, the Clarkson University Volleyball team seems to be finding a groove, as the Golden Knights downed Cortland State Tuesday night in three sets, 25-23, 25-17, 25-18, for their sixth consecutive victory while increasing their streak of sets won to 17 straight.
The Golden Knights improved to 13-4 overall, taking a single-match break from league play. Clarkson, receiving votes in the latest AVCA coaches' poll, will return to league play this weekend with a stretch of four matches in two days against Bard, Skidmore, Union, and Vassar.
Senior setter Lani Durio (Austin, TX) recorded her fifth straight match with 30 or more assists (34) despite playing only three sets in each of those matches. Sophomore Victoria Kirkemo (Englewood, CO) came back from a two-match break during a minor injury strong with 12 kills to lead the Knights, while Xiao Liang (Tianjin, China) added eight kills and a pair of solo blocks. Clarkson also continued its strong serving run with eight more aces with Durio contributing three and Kirstie Shurie (LaCanada, CA) and Erika Chin (Katy, TX) each adding two. Chin also produced a team-best 18 digs. Rounding out the offensive stats were Adrienne Walker (Centennial, CO) and Aishvina Arasu (Brea, CA), who each had seven kills, and Lauren Hutchinson (Spring, TX), who contributed six kills. Walker also had four total blocks.
"We have learned about ourselves that we have the tremendous ability to close out tense situations," head coach Johan Dulfer said, "but honestly I wish we didn't have to use it so often tonight. We built some huge leads and went into coasting mode a few too many times. I thought Cortland was well-coached, positive, and smart about changing up their game if something wasn't working. When all is said and done, any win over Cortland is a great win for us."