Douglas dominates as volleyball seeks to improve

Jude Papillion, Sports Editor

The Tulane women’s volleyball team has completed 13 matches of the season and currently stands with a record of 5-8 with six matches remaining in the regular season. The Green Wave is currently 3-3 in American Athletic Conference play. This is the first time Green Wave volleyball has been in action since the fall of 2019, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, as their typical fall season was pushed to the spring

The Olive and Blue began their season on Jan. 22 on the road against the University of Southern Mississippi. Tulane opened its season with a win, defeating the Golden Eagles on the road to win the match 3-0. Senior outside hitter Lexie Douglas led the Green Wave, having 12 kills and hitting .250. 

The next day, the team faced the University of New Orleans and defeated the Privateers 3-2 in five sets. Douglas led the way with 14 kills, but the Green Wave also saw strong showings from Yvette Burcescu with 11 kills and Anna Davis and Kayla Dinkins with 10 kills each. 

On Jan. 28, the Green Wave faced the University of Southeastern Louisiana at the Hertz Center, dropping their first match of the season 1-3 in four sets. Douglas continued her dominance, totaling 16 kills and hitting .382, while Dinkins and Burcescu tacked on 12 and 10 kills respectively. 

On Jan. 30, Tulane faced Stephen F. Austin State University for two matches. The Green Wave dropped the first match 1-3. In the match, Mackenzie Martin had a double-double, totaling 10 kills and 11 digs, and freshman Davis also had 10 kills and six blocks. Douglas led the team with 15 kills and hit .205. In the second match, the Green Wave fell 0-3. Douglas again led the Green Wave with 12 kills, while also hitting .300. 

Mackenzie Martin had a career-high 14 kills against UCF. (Parker Waters)

The Green Wave traveled to Orlando, Florida, on the weekend of Feb. 5 to face the University of Central Florida in two matches. Tulane dropped both matches to the Golden Knights, losing both matches 1-3. In the first match, Martin had a career-high 14 kills and hit .294. Dinkins also played well, recording seven kills, five blocks and hit .400. In the second match, Douglas had 17 kills, and Dinkins and Martin both had 13. Dinkins also had an impressive .478 hitting percentage. 

Tulane secured its first conference win on Feb. 12, defeating the University of Memphis 3-1. Douglas had a double-double, contributing 14 kills and 10 digs. Dinkins and Davis also played well, with Dinkins totaling 11 kills and hitting .333, while Davis had 10 kills and hit .375. The Green Wave defeated the Tigers in the second match of the weekend 3-0 to sweep the series against Memphis. Douglas had another double-double, recording 15 kills and 11 digs. Dinkins and Martin also tacked on nine kills each in the match. 

The Green Wave faced the University of Houston on the road on Feb. 20, falling 1-3 to the Cougars. Martin led the Olive and Blue with 10 kills and hitting .231, while Davis recorded nine kills and hit .333. Tulane also dropped the second match of the weekend against Houston 1-3. The Green Wave outnumbered the Cougars in digs at 61 compared to Houston’s 55. Davis led Tulane with 13 kills and hit a .281, while Douglas added 12 more kills.

Lexie Douglas posted 22 kills in two consecutive matches against SMU. (Parker Waters)

On March 4, Tulane faced Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas, taking down the Mustangs 3-1 in the first of two matches. Tulane dominated the Mustangs in the first match, recording 66 kills, 81 digs, 59 assists and 10 blocks. Douglas had a career-high in both kills and digs, putting up 22 and 21 respectively for an impressive double-double. Despite Tulane’s display of complete dominance in the first match, the Mustangs claimed victory in the second match, taking down the Green Wave 1-3. In the second match, Douglas posted 22 kills again, while Dinkins added 11 kills and six blocks. 

The Green Wave will face Wichita State University in a two-match series March 12-13 at Avron B. Fogelman Arena in the Devlin Fieldhouse. Tulane will then face the University of South Florida on the weekend of March 19 and the University of Tulsa on the weekend of March 26 before competing in the AAC Tournament starting on Apr. 2.