College of DuPage's Student Newspaper

The Courier

College of DuPage's Student Newspaper

The Courier

Chaparral Volleyball Splits Home Opener Tournament

The COD women’s volleyball team showcased strong serving across their first four games at home.
Rachel Wagner

The College of DuPage women’s volleyball team hosted the COD Invitational tournament at Klaas Court on Aug. 25 and 26 against four different teams. After two matches on the first day, the defending national champions were split 1-1. With two more games the following day, the Chaparrals split their other two games, finishing with a 2-2 record, bringing their overall record to 6-5.

“If anything, [the tournament] gave us more encouragement,” head volleyball coach Tolis Koskinaris said. “We beat the two Division III teams which are the same division as us, Harper and Genesee. We were able to hang tough with Moraine [Valley] which is Division II and John A. Logan which is Division I. We kept our head above water. We finished the first two weeks of the season with a winning record, and for a young team coming together that’s really wonderful to see.”

DAY 1: Game One vs. Moraine Valley Community College

COD started the tournament off strong against Moraine Valley Community College, winning their first set of the match after fighting to hold the lead. As the Cyclones started making more of their shots, the Chaparrals couldn’t keep up with their receives. The Chaps lost their first match of the day 1-3; final scores of the sets were 26-24, 24-26, 22-25 and 16-25.

Sophomore libero Cyd Martinez led the team with 28 digs and scored three service aces on 21 attacks with one service error throughout the game. She also made four set assists.

“I feel like we did pretty well against Moraine Valley,” Martinez said. “The only thing that didn’t put us over the edge was our resilience and our will to win. They just outplayed us, but I think we did a lot of really good things that game.”

Freshman outside hitter Christina Savaglio landed 11 kills on 31 attacks with eight errors. She also made five digs.

“[Moraine Valley] was just a really good team,” Savaglio said. “Our energy wasn’t there which made it pretty difficult for us to compete.”

Freshman left side Melissa Alvarez landed 16 kills on 48 attacks with seven errors against Moraine Valley. (Rachel Wagner)

Game Two vs. Genesee Community College (NY)

COD went into game two of the tournament with laser focus as their serving left Genesee Community College defenseless. With a team total of 14 service aces, the Chaps shut out the Cougars 3-0. The final scores of the sets were 25-13, 25-13 and 25-19.

Martinez made two service aces on 11 serves with zero errors throughout the game. She also made eight digs and three set assists.

“We just had really good serves that game,” Martinez said. “It made it really easy for our offense and defense to work together and put down points. It was fun. We did a lot of really good things that game, and we came out on top.”

Sophomore defensive specialist Jaidyn Tan scored six service aces on 21 attacks with two service errors. She also made eight digs.

“When I step onto the court, and I’m ready to serve, I go to the third or fourth hashmark,” Tan said. “I take a few dribbles, deep breaths to calm my nerves, lower my shoulders to make sure I’m not tense when I hit the ball and then I execute. I just look at what the zone is, and I try to hit it as best as I can, either getting an ace or putting them out of system.”

DAY 2: Game Three vs. John A. Logan College

The Chaparrals went into day two of the tournament against the Volunteers with more energy in the front of the net. After losing the lead, COD fought to tie the first set 23-23 but couldn’t put John A. Logan College away. They fought to keep it close, but by the third set, the Vols ran away with the lead, shutting the Chaps out 0-3. The final scores of the sets were 23-25, 22-25 and 13-25.

Sophomore outside hitter Amanda Leibrock spiked seven kills on 29 attacks with four errors through the three sets. She said the Volunteers were their toughest opponents of the tournament.

“[The Volunteers’] offense was something that we haven’t gone up against this season,” Leibrock said. “Our defense was able to pick it up.”

Tan made nine serve attacks and 18 receive attempts. She also made five digs.

“[John A. Logan] had bigger hitters that placed the ball very strategically,” Tan said. “We were able to react quickly and rebound. I feel like we were playing very good defense. Offensively, we did a lot of things that were very good. Sometimes we weren’t able to come together as a collective unit to put the ball away.”

Sophomore defensive specialist Abigail Alonzo goes in for an underhand receive. (Rachel Wagner)

Game Four vs. Harper College

COD battled conference rivals in Haper College for their last match of the tournament. The Chaps went into the first set with unshakable focus, outserving and outreceiving the Hawks. Harper took the second set after COD got comfortable, serving as a wake-up call. The Chaparrals took the last two sets, beating the Hawks 3-1. The final scores of the sets were 25-16, 16-25, 25-19 and 25-16.

Savaglio landed four kills on 14 attacks with two errors through the four sets. She said she played the best offensively against Harper.

“There was a lot of pressure with this being our first conference game [this season],” Savaglio said. “I feel like I pulled through with hitting my shots and getting the ball down.”

Leibrock led the team, landing 21 kills on 56 attacks with seven errors through the match. She also made three digs.

“When I go up, I’m looking for spots on the court and holes in the block,” Leibrock said. “That’s a big thing on the outside; making something out of whatever set you get. [Assistant coach Frank Martinez] is always on me to be fast. [I also] make sure I’m up at the right time and connecting with my setters.”

The Chaparrals take on the Waubonsee Community College Chiefs at 6 p.m. on Aug. 29 on Klaas Court.

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