The Middlebury women's volleyball team had a perfect opening night to the 2016 season, as the Panthers netted a pair of wins Friday at the Union Invitational. Middlebury blanked SUNY Oneonta 3-0 (25-14, 25-15, 25-17) in its initial match of the tournament, and capped the evening with a 3-0 (25-20, 25-22, 25-8) triumph over Skidmore. The Panthers (2-0) are right back on the court tomorrow, facing the host Dutchwomen at 11:00 a.m. followed by a match against Susquehanna at 1:00 p.m.
In the season-opening victory over SUNY Oneonta, Hannah Blackburn dished out a match-high 25 assists with 11 digs and four service aces to pace Middlebury. Becca Raffel notched nine kills, while Alice Roberts (.545) and Isabel Sessions (.583) each had seven with hitting percentages over .500. Sarah Staver chipped in with four block assists.
The Panthers scored the first seven points of the opening set against the Thoroughbreds en route to their second sweep of the night. Raffel led the attack with 12 kills and Sessions recorded seven. Rose Gold finished with 11 assists and Eliana Schaefer had 10, while Emily Kolodka tallied nine digs and served a pair of aces. Staver had another steady match at the net with a solo block and four block assists to go along with six kills and two service aces.