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November 2, 2013

Ephs to Host NESCAC Volleyball Tournament Fri., Sat., & Sun/ Webcast Info, Records & Program

Williams Beats Bowdoin 3-0 to Claim NESCAC Title

WILIAMSTOWN, MA -- Top seeded Williams (25-4) played Bowdoin (23-7) for the NESCAC championship. Ultimately, the Ephs won in three sets. The scores of the sets were 25- 16, 25-15, and 25-19.

The Williams Ephs came out strong n the first set, jumping out to an early lead, with strong play by Mandy Schott and Ryan Farley. Tori Jasuta and Emily Doll led the offense to propel the Williams to finish the first set at 25- 16.

The second set started out as a close battle, with the Ephs keeping a one to two point lead.  Williams eventually widened their lead to four points with strong offensive play by freshman, Tori Jasuta, and service aces from Mandy Schott. Williams ended ep winning the set 25-15.

Williams had a slower start in the third set and found themselves down 9-7, but blocks from Claire Miller and outstanding defensive work from Emily O'Day helped tie the match at 9-9.  An ace from Tori Jasuta and kills from Ryan Farley helped widen the lead until Tori Jasuta finished the match with a block. Williams closed the third set out at 25-19.

Tori Jasuta led Williams' offense 20 kills and Jasuta also posted 13 digs. Ryan Farley had 40 assists.

Christy Jewett recordedd 9 kills for Bowdoin, and Mckenzie Kessel and Taylor Vail each had 7 digs for the Polar Bears. Quincy Leech registered 10 assists.

As the winner of the NESCAC Tournament Williams receives an automatic bid to the tournament. Runner-up Bowdoin will have to wait and see if they are extended an At-Large Bid by the NCAA. The tournament selections will be announced at 11:00 Am on Mondy at www.ncaa.com. 

This marks first NESCAC title since 2009 for Williams and i the second under head coach Christi Kelsey, giving the Ephs a conference-best 10th title overall.


Bowdoin Defeats Amherst in Five Sets to Advance to Finals

WILLIAMSTOWN, MA—Tonight second seeded Bowdoin (23-6) defeated third seeded Amherst (20-8) in five sets. The scores of the sets were 25-22, 22-25, 15-25, 25-20, and 15-13.

In the first set, Bowdoin and Amherst battled back and forth, until the end when Jewett's tough serve brought Bowdoin home 25- 22.

The second set was an even closer battle. Bowdoin took an early lead, only for Amherst to come back to lead at 16-13. Bowdoin once again went on a run behind Jewett's serve to lead 19-18. However, Amherst's defense went on a run to finish the game ay 25-22.

Amherst jumped on an early lead and with a strong performance from their defense and outside hitters, won the set at 25-15.

Bowdoin jumped on a lead in the fourth set, and stayed up by three to six points, until Amherst called a time out. With a strong blocking performance, Bowdoin closed the match at 25-20.

Bowdoin once again had an early start in the fifth set, leadin 7-2, but Amherst came back to be down only 8-7. The teams continued to battle until the game was tied at 13, but Bowdoin took the next two points to take the match, 15-13.

For Amherst, Nicole Gould led the offense with 20 kills, while Nicole Carer lead the defense with 25 digs. Nicole Garter had 36 assists.

For Bowdoin, Christy Jewett lead the offense with 24 kills, while Quincy Leech lead the defense with 25 digs. Quincy Leech had 48 assists.

Bowdoin will face Williams tomorrow at noon for the NESCAC title and the automatic berth in the NCAA Tournament that goes to the champion.

Williams Defeats Tufts 3-0 in Semi- Finals

WILLIAMSTOWN, MA—Today top seeded Williams (24-4) defeated fourth seeded Tufts (20-8) in three straight sets.

The Ephs won 25-22, 25-11, and 25-8 to advance to tomorrow's NESCAC finals against the winner of the Bowdoin vs Amherst match at 3 pm.

Williams and Tufts had close play through the first set, with strong performances by Williams pin hitters and Tufts middles. The set was closed out by Williams at 25-22.

Williams found themselves down early in the second set, but rallied to pull away to 13-8 with strong play from Tori Jasuta. Williams finished the set at 25-11

In the third set, Williams steadily outperformed Tufts, and had a 9-3 lead early on. Williams never relinquished their lead and finished at 25-8.

Tori Jasuta led Williams offense with 17 kills, while Mandy Schott had 11 digs. Ryan Farley had 38 assists.

Haley Hopper had 5 kills for Tufts, and Carolina Berger had 9 digs for the Jumbos, while Kyra Baum had 15 assists.

Tufts Hangs on to Defeat Connecticut College 3-2

WILLIAMSTOWN, MA — The Tufts College women's volleyball team managed to hang on for a five-set win over Connecticut College 25-21, 26-24, 28-30, 25-27, and 15-8 in the NESCAC tournament quarterfinals held at Williams College. Tuft's win elevated their record to 20-7 on the season, while lowering Connecticut College's record to 15-12.

The Camels got off to a hot start, putting together a four-point run early to give them a slim 6-4 lead. This stretch of points was capped off by a well-earned point where sophomore Jamie Balkin made a beautiful diving dig which fell perfectly to fellow sophomore Kaitlin Cunningham who set a beautiful pass for another sophomore, Caroline Martin, who finished the point off with an inch-perfect spike into the open part of the court. From there, the Camels extended their lead to 9-6, but then the Jumbos came alive. Sophomore libero Carolina Berger made a wonderful sliding dig off a massive smash from a Camel outside hitter, before freshman Elizabeth Ahrens stuffed the next Camel smash. This great defensive point sent the Jumbos on a seven-point tear that gave them a large enough lead to close out the first set 25-21.

Each side got off to a slow start in the second set, but the combination of sophomore Kyra Baum and junior Isabel Kuhel for the Jumbos and the combination of freshman Emily Arterbury and junior Anelise Hohl for the Camels both came alive late in the set. After a string of errors that left the score at 15-14 in favor of the Camels, Baum assisted three Kuhel kills in a span of four points, with the other kill going to Hopper. Arterbury and Hohl responded by connecting for two points of their own, and the back-and-forth continued all the way to 24-24, when a pair of assists by Baum, to Hopper and then Kuhel, closed out the set 26-24.

The Jumbos looked to be cruising to a relaxed straight-sets victory when disaster struck up 24-16 in the third set. The Camels managed to rattle off eight straight points thanks to a pair of aces by Arterbury and some nervous setting by the Jumbos. Once the score had been tied up, each team exchanged points until the Camels had their first set point at 29-28, when Martin served a ball in the back-left corner for an ace, keeping the Camels alive.

The Jumbos came out in the fourth set reenergized, taking seven of the first eight points, including five points in-a-row. It didn't take the Camels too long for them to formulate a response, however, as they put together a streak of seven points of their own, thanks to a pair of aces from Martin and a pair of kills from freshman Chloe Ainley. Drawing memories of the second set, each team exchanged points to the score 24-24, when the Camels found a way once again to survive a set point, thanks to the combination of Arterbury and Hohl for two kills to put away the fourth set 27-25.

The Camels could only dance their way out of danger so many times as the Jumbos first went on a four-point run then a six-point run several points later to ensure that they would easily rap up the match after some shaky moments.

Kuhel lead all scorers with 17 of the Jumbos' 51 kills, while Ainley and freshman Alex McDevitt shared the spoils for the Camels with 15 each of the 58 total kills. Baum had 41 of the Jumbo's 51 assists, while Arterbury had 47 of the Camels' 59 total assists.

Tufts plays the hosts, Williams College, tomorrow at 1 PM.


Amherst Downs Middlebury 3-1
Courtesy of Amherst Sports Information

WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. - Three Jeffs tallied double-digit kills to lead the Amherst women's volleyball team to a 3-1 win over Middlebury on Friday night in the NESCAC Quarterfinals hosted by Williams.

Friday's match marked the third meeting between the two teams with the Jeffs (20-7) claiming a 2-1 advantage in the series. Amherst advanced to the NESCAC Semifinals for the first time since the 2010 season and will face Bowdoin tomorrow at 3:30 p.m. With the loss, Middlebury's season comes to an end, as it finishes with an 18-7 overall record.

The Panthers took the first set of the match, 25-21, but Amherst rallied to win the next three sets by scores of 29-27, 25-21 and 25-18.

Maggie Danner and Nicole Gould led the team offensively with 14 kills each and Lauren Antion joined the first-years in double-digits with 10 of her own. Samantha Newby added seven kills on a team-high .316 hitting percentage.

Setting up the offensive attack was setter Nicole Carter. The sophomore recorded a double-double with 41 assists and 12 digs and also added four solo blocks. Defensively, Katie Warshaw led the team with 15 digs, while Antion and Danner completed the double-double with 13 and 11, respectively.

Seniors Megan Jarchow and Amy Hart tallied 24 kills apiece to lead Middlebury, while Hannah Blackburn dished out a match-high 55 assists. Lizzy Reed had 23 digs to lead the Panthers and Jarchow added 16 with Hart contributing 14.

The Jeffs return to the court tomorrow for a 3:30 p.m. contest against second-seeded Bowdoin in NESCAC Semifinal action at Williams. Amherst looks to avenge a 3-0 loss to the Polar Bears earlier in the year.

Bowdoin Edges Trinity 3-2 in NESCAC Quarterfinal Tilt

WILLIAMSTOWN, MA — The Bowdoin College women's volleyball team survived a five-set thriller with Trinity College 25-15, 17-25, 19-25, 25-16, and 15-13 in the quarterfinals of the NESCAC tournament at Williams College. Bowdoin's win lifted their record to 22-6 on the year and dropped Trinity's record to 15-12.

The first set was won with relative comfort by the Polar Bears by the score of 25-15, even though it started out evenly. At 4-4, the Polar Bears took over and went on a streak of five points, accelerating them out to a 9-4 lead. The Polar Bears won a crucial point right after their streak ended, by way of a fantastic dig made by sophomore Christy Jewett to extend the point long enough for senior Sophia Cornew to assist freshman Katie Doherty's kill moments later. The Polar Bears did not look back from there, going on a pair of four-point streaks later on to secure the set. Doherty played a huge role for the Polar Bears in the first set, tallying two aces to go along with her three kills and a block.

The Bantams came back with a vengeance in the second set, taking it by a margin of 25-17. The Bantams went on an eight-to-one run after dropping the first two points of the set. Sophomore Kate Giddens put in a great effort during that run, racking up a pair of aces and a pair of kills to lift the Bantams to an early 8-3 lead. After splitting the next six points, the Bantams went on another back-breaking streak of five points to go up 16-6 and put the second set just about out of reach for the Polar Bears. A beautiful dig by Giddens, leading to a kill by sophomore Hunter Drews assisted by freshman Randi Whitman, finished the set off in style.

A highly-contested 25-19 third set saw the Bantams take a two-sets-to-one lead over the Polar Bears  after being down earlier in the set. The Polar Bears jumped out to a 5-1 lead, but then Bantam senior Hannah Brickley took over the game, sending her side on an eleven-to-three run, including six points in a row. Brickley combined with junior setter Amy Hackett for a pair of kills before serving up three aces in a row later in the streak. The Polar Bears attempted a comeback late in the set after an inspiring dig made by senior libero Taylor Vail, but their late surge was halted by a pair of kills by Giddens to end the set.

Staring down the wrong end of an upset, the Polar Bears showed barely any nerves taking the fourth set 25-16. They jumped out to a quick 7-3 lead thanks in large part to three kills by Jewett, before goin on a six-to-one streak of points later, while Jewett added four more kills to her three from earlier in the set to help force a fifth set with the Bantams.

The fifth set was easily the most highly-contested of the match. The Bantams came out as if they had nothing to lose, putting forth a great team effort to win the first two points. A diving dig by freshman libero Kristen Cooprider allowed for Hackett to assist Drews for a well-earned first point. The very next point saw a gorgeous set by Hackett put away by Brickle to earn the Bantams a slim early lead. 

The Polar Bears quickly found their footing in the set, however, as a pair of kills from Jewett equalized the score. Several points later, an eye-popping sliding dig by freshman Polar Bear Quincy Leech allowed for Leech to combine with Jewett beautifully later to put the Polar Bears up 5-3. 

As the tiebreaker set progressed, the lead continued to be exchanged between the two teams. 

The Bantams went down 8-5, but then a serve by Cooprider clipped the tape of the net and fell perfectly between all the Polar Bears, inspiring the Bantams to win the next two points as well, leveling the score. 

As it came down to the wire, an ace by Drews left the match all-square at 13-13, but then Jewett came alive. After an awkward dig by Leech, Jewett floated a beautiful set to senior Ellie Brennan to put away, and on match point she connected with a miss-measured set made by the Bantams to smash the ball right back down into the faces of the Bantams, sending the Polar Bears to the semifinals for the third straight year.

Jewett led all scorers with 18 kills out of the 47 total from the Polar Bears, while Giddens led the Bantams with 14 of their 42 kills. Leech had 20 of the Polar Bears' 44 kills, and Hackett had 21 of the 40 made by the Bantams.

Bowdoin will play the winner of Middlebury and Amherst tomorrow at 3:30 PM.
 

Wiliams Downs Bates 3-0 in NESCAC Quarterfinal Match

WILLIAMSTOWN, MA -- Top seeded Williams College (23-4) defeated Bates College (11-18) 3-0 in a NESCAC Quartfinal match played in Chandler Gym.

The Ephs won 25-22, 25-16 and 25-10 to advance to tomorrow's semifinals at 1:00 PM, where they will go up against the winner of the Conn vs Tufts match.

Despite being down by four points early in the first set, thanks to saves from Mandy Schott and blocks from Katherine Lane, the Ephs were able to turn the momentum around.  Kills from Claire Miller, and Emily Doll helped Williams overtake Bates to win the set 25-22.

Williams took an early lead in the second set with kills from Tori Jasuta.  Bates crept back in to the match, almost tying up the game, but the Ephs turned up their energy to push back and eventually widened their lead to six points. The Ephs held their lead to finish the set at 25-16.

Williams jumped on an early lead in the third set leading 8-1 until Bates called a time out.  Willaism continued their run with kills from Doll, Jasuta, and Raea Rasmussen.  Mandy Schott also contributed with services aces.  Williams finished the set at 25-10.

Ryan Farley led Williams with 29 assists and Bates' Tess Walther registered 13 assists. Jasuta led all players with 13 kills and Chandler McGrath posted 6 for Bates.  Tori Jasuta recorded 11 digs for the Ephs and Laryssa Schepel had 11 to lead the Bobcats.

"I think we are all excited that the tournament is finally underway," said coach Christi Kelsey, "Bates definitely came out strong and prepared to play.  We were a little slow at the start but we leveled out and started to play a good consistent game from there.  We look forward to the opportunity to play again tomorrow." 

Tomorrow Williams will play the winner of the Tufts vs Conn match at 1 pm.


Championship Program

Championship Records

Webcast Link

NOTE: Friday night matches on Court 1 only will be webcast:

5:00 PM – Williams vs. Bates
8:00 PM – Middlebury vs. Amherst

Both semifinal matches on Saturday and the championship match on Sunday will be webcast.

HADLEY, Mass. – Williams wrapped up the 2013 campaign with an unblemished conference mark of 10-0 to earn the top seed in the NESCAC Volleyball Championship for the first time since 2006. The Ephs also earned the right to host all rounds of the tournament at Lasell Gymnasium.  Quarterfinal round action is slated to get underway on Friday, November 8 at 5 p.m. Semifinal matches will be played on Saturday, November 9 followed by the championship game on Sunday, November 10.

"It is a great accomplishment and honor to host NESCACs this year," said Eph head coach Christi Kelsey. "Our team is really excited for this opportunity and it is a well-deserved reward for all their efforts during the regular season. All that being said though, what makes the NESCAC so great is the true depth of talent and competitiveness from all eight teams who earned the right to play this weekend. Every single team has a shot to win this weekend so our group knows that every single match is going to be a battle from start to finish. There will be a lot of great volleyball in Chandler Gym this weekend and we are looking forward to being a part of it."

Willams (22-4, 10-0 NESCAC) dominated conference play, dropping just four sets during league competition. Most of the Eph victories have been by the score of 3-0, as Williams has posted 17 straight-set wins. Much of the Ephs' success is predicated on a potent offense that averages more than 13 kills per set and hits over .275 as a team. Williams closed out the regular season with a 3-0 victory at Wesleyan today. The Ephs have won a league-best nine NESCAC titles with the most recent titles coming in 2007, 2008 and 2009.
 
Williams opens play against Bates (11-17, 2-8 NESCAC). The Bobcats closed out the season with a 2-4 record over the final two weeks. They finished in a deadlock for eighth place with Colby and Wesleyan, but were awarded the final playoff slot due to a 3-2 triumph over the Mules on October 5 and a 3-2 victory over the Cardinals on October 19. Bates took home four straight conference titles from 1990-93. The Ephs defeated the Bobcats, 3-0, on September 20. Williams owns a 2-0 edge in the post-season series versus Bates, but have not met since the 2003 final where the Ephs prevailed 3-0.
 
Bowdoin (21-6, 8-2 NESCAC) earned the second seed by defeating Hamilton in straight sets today for its third consecutive 20-win season. In the second half of the season, the Polar Bears rattled off a 12-match winning streak that ended on October 26 following a straight-set loss to Wellesley. The Polar Bears are in search of their second overall NESCAC trophy, having captured their lone title in 2011 after defeating Middlebury, 3-0. Bowdoin's quarterfinal opponent is Trinity (15-11, 5-5 NESCAC). The Bantams, which went 8-2 at home, closed out the regular season with a straight-set set win over Amherst. Trinity raced out to a 7-2 record against non-conference opponents to start the season. The Bantams have a scrappy defense that leads the league in digs per set (18.12). Trinity is looking for its elusive first NESCAC title, as it makes its 12th NESCAC Championship appearance. Bowdoin won this year's meeting versus the Bantams, 3-0, on October 19. The Polar Bears won the only NESCAC Championship match-up between the two teams, which was in a 2011 semifinal, 3-1.
 
Amherst and Tufts were tied for third place in the standings, but the Lord Jeffs defeated the Jumbos, 3-1, on October 5 to win the tiebreaker. Amherst (19-7, 7-3 NESCAC) enters the championship as one of the hottest teams in the league despite wrapping up the regular season with a 3-0 loss at Trinity. The Lord Jeffs went 8-5 in September, but have gone 12-2 since then, losing only eight sets during that stretch. Amherst fields the youngest team in the post-season with no seniors and just one junior on the roster. That has not stopped the Lord Jeffs from being one of the best all-around teams in the conference, though. They rank third in kills per set (11.86) and blocks per set (2.06) and second in digs per set (16.80). Amherst hopes to add a fourth NESCAC title to its trophy case to go along with championships won in 1999, 2000 and 2006. The Lord Jeffs will face sixth-seed Middlebury (18-6, 5-5 NESCAC), the defending champion and winners of two of the last three NESCAC titles, in the quarterfinal round. The Panthers moved into a tie for sixth in the standings after defeating Bates, 3-1, this afternoon, and won the tiebreaker over Trinity courtesy of Middlebury's straight-set win against the Bantams on October 5. This season Amherst and Middlebury split a pair of games, with the Lord Jeffs winning the conference meeting, 3-1, but the Panthers avenged the loss last week in a 3-2 victory. Middlebury, which is pursuing its fifth overall league title, has the most experienced roster in the tournament with three seniors and three juniors. Amherst owns a 2-0 record against the Panthers in the NESCAC Championship with the most recent result being a 3-2 win in the 2009 quarterfinal.  
 
Fourth-seeded Tufts (19-7, 7-3 NESCAC) is riding a seven-match winning streak after going 1-3 at the start of October. The Jumbos ended conference play with a 3-1 victory over Colby this afternoon. Tufts is one of the top blocking teams in the league, ranking second with 2.35 blocks per set, and one of the most efficient hitting teams, ranking third with a .211 hitting percentage. In the last six years, the Jumbos have advanced to the semifinals five times with the lone loss coming to Bowdoin in a 3-0 quarterfinal decision a year ago. Tufts took home the title in 1996 and has advanced to the finals seven times. Squaring off against the Jumbos in the remaining quarterfinal is Connecticut College (15-11, 6-4 NESCAC). Last year's No. 1 seed, the Camels advanced to the NESCAC final for the first time in program history, but came up short in a 3-0 loss to Middlebury. This season Connecticut College went 10-0 on its home court, and closed out the regular season 8-2 to earn its ninth consecutive NESCAC Championship berth. Tufts won the annual meeting between the two squads in straight sets on September 28.
 
Results for the NESCAC Volleyball Championship will be available at the completion of each day on the NESCAC website.

2013 NESCAC Volleyball Championship Schedule
Hosted by Williams College
Quarterfinals - Friday, November 8
#8 Bates at #1 Williams – 5 p.m.
#7 Trinity vs. #2 Bowdoin – 5 p.m.
#6 Middlebury vs. #3 Amherst – 8 p.m.
#5 Connecticut College vs. #4 Tufts – 8 p.m.

Semifinals - Saturday, November 9
Winner of 1/8 vs. Winner of 4/5 – 1 p.m.
Winner of 2/7 vs. Winner of 3/6 – 3:30 p.m.

Championship - Sunday, November 10
Semifinal Winners - Noon

 

WILLIAMSTOWN, MA -- Top seeded Williams College (23-4) defeated Bates College (11-18) 3-0 in a NESCAC Quartfinal match played in Chandler Gym.

The Ephs won 25-22, 25-16 and 25-10 to advance to tomorrow's semifinals at 1:00 PM, where they will go up against the winner of the Conn vs Tufts match.

Despite being down by four points early in the first set, thanks to saves from Mandy Schott and blocks from Katherine Lane, the Ephs were able to turn the momentum around. Kills from Claire Miller, and Emily Doll helped Williams overtake Bates to win the set 25-22.

Williams took an early lead in the second set with kills from Tori Jasuta. Bates crept back in to the match, almost tying up the game, but the Ephs turned up their energy to push back and eventually widened their lead to six points. The Ephs held their lead to finish the set at 25-16.

Williams jumped on an early lead in the third set leading 8-1 until Bates called a time out. Willaism continued their run with kills from Doll, Jasuta, and Raea Rasmussen. Mandy Schott also contributed with services aces. Williams finished the set at 25-10.

Ryan Farley led Williams with 29 assists and Bates' Tess Walther registered 13 assists. Jasuta led all players with 13 kills and Chandler McGrath posted 6 for Bates. Tori Jasuta recorded 11 digs for the Ephs and Laryssa Schepel had 11 to lead the Bobcats.

"I think we are all excited that the tournament is finally underway," said coach Christi Kelsey, "Bates definitely came out strong and prepared to play. We were a little slow at the start but we leveled out and started to play a good consistent game from there. We look forward to the opportunity to play again tomorrow."

Tomorrow Williams will play the winner of the Tufts vs Conn match at 1 pm.

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