Sand volleyball shines in the sun with program's first win


The Mercer sand volleyball team booked the program’s first victory on Saturday, topping Tulane 3-2 at the Mercer sand volleyball complex.
The Bears’ win moved the team to 1-5 on the year while Tulane fell to 1-7.
Mercer won in a highly contested first flight competetion, as the No. 1 duo of Cassie Roy and Jamie Duffy earned a 2-1 (21-16, 19-21, 15-11) victory over Tulane’s Grace Weaver and Cori Martone.
Junior Jamie Duffy was more than ecstatic about the win in her match, and credited her partner Roy for coming up with some big plays.
“I feel like we worked as a team, and when it got tough we executed. We’ve been practicing with each other for a while now so we know exactly what the other is going to do. It was tied up going into our match, and we knew we had to come up big for Mercer. On the last point, I knew that if I gave Cassie the perfect set, that she would kill it for the win. So I focused to put it exactly where it needed to be so that she could bring us home, and she did. We didn’t want to let our friends down. We didn’t want to let Mercer down,” said Duffy.
In the next flight, Mercer’s No. 2 team of Caroline Carlton and Emily Rochefort swept the Tulane faction of Milena Dragovic and Nikki Osuna in straight sets.
Rochefort and Carlton had to overcome some adversity before the match. Carlton broke her nose the week before, and played despite her injuries. Rochefort noted that she and Carlton were both nervous.
“I was extremely nervous going into the match, because my partner Caroline had nose surgery the day before. But she went into the match without hesitation and played better than ever before. I am really proud of her and the team’s overall performance,” said Rochefort.
Mercer’s No. 3 pairing of Monica Sanchez and Jennifer Katona secured the team’s victory, overpowering Tulane’s representatives with scores of 21-13 and 21-14.
Junior Monica Sanchez credited the support of the Mercer crowd for helping them get through some rough patches in each of the matches.
I think that because we had a few matches under our belt, we felt more confident going into the Tulane match. It was definitely a team effort though, and we could not thank everyone enough who came out and supported us,” said Sanchez.
Tulane earned wins in the fourth and fifth flights against the teams of Lizzie Knapper and Erin Brett, and Madison Petsos and Emily Brett, wrapping up the day’s action.
Coming off the win, Mercer returns to competitive play in the season finale at Alabama-Birmingham on April 15.