Boston, MA—Williams volleyball (6-1) goes undefeated on the second day of the UMass Boston Invitational, downing Whitman (3-5) in four sets and sweeping Western Connecticut State (11-3) in three sets.
After a tough day of playing eight sets on Friday, the Ephs jumped back onto the court this afternoon for two more matches.
At 1pm Williams faced off with Whitman College (3-5), starting the first set with an early lead. Whitman managed to tie up the score at 15-15 after some Eph errors, but Williams shook it off and came back with big kills by Claire Miller, Tori Jasuta, and setter Ryan Farley, forcing Whitman to call time-out when the score reached 21-18, Williams. The Ephs refused to let up after the time-out, and ended the set with a kill from Katherine Lane, 25-20.
Whitman came back after losing the first set, fighting on thanks to Kanakaole. Although the Ephs held up their strong defense, play was point-for-point with Williams trailing slightly behind until tying up the score at 8-8. A string of kills by Claire Miller, Catherine Egan, and Tori Jasuta allowed for Miller's serving streak that brought the Ephs two-point deficit and pushed them to a 17-15 lead. After a Whitman time-out, two kills by Jasuta and a service ace and kill by Catie Benell pushed Williams lead to 22-16. Whitman's Shae Kanakaole and Kaileah Akker battled back, pushing a late tie at 25-25. Consecutive errors and a final kill by Whitman's Franny Gardner gave Whitman the second set, 28-26.
The Ephs had a slow start in the second set, trailing by as much as six points early on. The team quickly charged ahead, however, and tied the score at 14-14 before pushing their lead even further with a five-point streak, setting the score at 19-14. Kills by Anna Spellman, Catherine Egan, and Raea Rasmussen pushed the Ephs to game-point, before Katherine Lane crushed center court with a kill to win the Ephs the third set, 25-18.
Williams burst into the third set with their winning momentum and forced an early lead. The Ephs racked up their points despite kills by Whitman's Kanakaole and Natalia Zea. Again, a final kill by Katherine Lane won the Ephs the fourth set, 25-15.
Katherine Lane and Anna Spellman led the way during the first match today with large hitting percentages, .524 and .333, respectively. Tori Jasuta scored 19 kills followed by Lane who scored 12. Libero Amanda Schott led both teams by a large margin in terms of digs, managing 30 balls total.
Williams had another successful match against Western Connecticut State at 3pm, taking the first three sets.
The Ephs had a great hitting day, and different players came in off the bench and contributed in good ways. The Ephs took the first set 25-16, the second set 26-24, and the third set 25-17. Katherine Lane and Tori Jasuta led Williams in their final match of the UMass Boston Invitational, scoring 6 and 15 kills respectively. Amanda Schott and Tori Jasuta manned the Ephs' defense, digging 8 and 6 balls in all three sets. Ryan Farley again contributed an impressive 34 assists and sported a .286 hitting average.
As the Ephs concluded their difficult weekend with four matches and thirteen sets total, Coach Christi Kelsey stated, "It was nice to see our team rebound and compete hard against Whitman this morning given the tough loss the night before," and commented that all four matches, "were good learning lessons for us as we continue to develop very early here in the season."
Williams will play next against Wesleyan University in Middletown, Connecticut, at 8pm this Friday in thier first NESCAC match.