By: Jordan Cope, Assistant Sports Editor
Towson began Colonial Athletic Association play this week with a 3-2 victory over Delaware Sunday and a 3-2 loss to James Madison Wednesday.
Against the Blue Hens, the Tigers earned a 3-2 win despite dropping the first set 25-22.
“We had some career highs out of our kids, they really performed well,” Head Coach Don Metil said. “In set five we had the matchups that favored us and we got our best attackers up there for two whole rotations which really helped us.”
In the first set, Towson led Delaware 17-14. However, the Blue Hens went on a 7-0 run to take a 21-17 lead. After Delaware’s run, the Tigers did not lead again in that set.
Towson used sets two and three to take a 2-1 lead over Delaware.
Set two began as a back and forth contest until the Tigers went on a 4-0 run to take a 5-2 lead.
Towson later went on a 5-0 run to take a 10-3 lead early in the set, and a 3-0 run late in the set to close out Delaware.
In set three, the Blue Hens and Tigers traded a pair of 2-0 runs early, which left the set tied 4-4. However, Towson jumped out to a fast 2-0 lead over the Tigers. However, Towson used a 5-0 run to take a 20-12 lead and a 3-0 run to take a 25-15 win.
Delaware took set four and forced a decisive set five after jumping out to a fast 4-1 and finishing on a 4-0 run to win 25-18.
In the decisive set five, the Tigers and Blue Hens were neck and neck early until a kill from freshman Jocelyn Kuilan sparked a 3-0 Towson run in which the team took an 11-8 lead en route to a 15-9 win.
In Wednesday’s loss to the James Madison Dukes, Towson fell 3-2.
“They did some good things,” Metil said. “Unfortunately we let that second set slip away from us and then we had to battle back again and in set five I think we just put some undue pressures on ourselves mentally and really dug ourselves into a hole that we never recovered from.”
Set one started off close as the Tigers trailed the Dukes 13-11. However, James Madison went on a 4-0 run to take a 17-11 lead and eventually took the set 25-19.
James Madison also won a long set two 31-29. Despite an early 7-0 Towson run in which the Tigers took an 11-4 lead.
The Dukes would battle back with a series of small runs to close out the set.
Despite dropping its first two sets, Towson showed resilience and won sets three and four to force a decisive set five.
“I think that we have some leaders on the team and a lot of young kids on the team,” Metil said. “We saw them battle out of some pretty dire circumstances and I think the leadership on the team is really showcasing the ability to turn things around.”
However, the Tigers dropped set five 15-7 after the Dukes went on a devastating 9-0 run to take a 9-1 lead before clinching set five and the game.
“At the end of the day their right side played better than our right side,” Metil said. “We were in every set and we are really looking forward to playing them here at our place which at that time will hopefully be a fully healthy team.”
Towson will conclude its four game road trip next weekend as the Tigers take on William & Mary and Elon.