Williamstown, MA— Eph Volleyball (12-1, 4-0 NESCAC) battled Hamilton College (10-5, 2-1 NESCAC) this evening, beating the Continentals after winning the first set, giving up the second, and sweeping the final two. The final set scores were 25-23, 22-25, 25-19, 25-18.
The game, originally scheduled for 8pm, was delayed an hour due to Hamilton's bus breakdown. Keeping the score tied early in the first set, Williams and Hamilton exchanged kills during long rallies. The Continentals pushed their score to 9-7, but the Ephs quickly won the side-out and pushed points to 10-9 during Ryan Farley's serve. The Ephs fell behind after a Hamilton kill and a damaging call by the referee, and called a time-out when the score reached 14-11, Hamilton. After some lost battles at the net, the score continued to slip, 18-13, Continentals. A serving streak by Caitie Benell racked up points for the Ephs until they trailed only by one point. Hamilton called a time-out in attempt to quell the Ephs' advances and gathered a side-out before pushing their score to 21-18. With Farley firing cannons at the service line, gathering two aces, Williams finally regained the lead, forcing Hamilton to call another time out at 22-21, Williams. The Continentals earned a side-out coming out of time-out, but the Ephs pushed on until their game point, and Tori Jasuta terminated the final play against a Continental blocking error, winning the first set, 25-23.
Hamilton charged back in at the start of the second set, starting out 3-0 before a kill by Jasuta. The point deficit grew to five as a block by the Continentals pushed the score to 9-4, Hamilton, and Williams called a time-out. The score grew to 11-4 and Eph Anna Spellman entered the court. However, more Eph errors let the score slip to 16-5, when Coach Kelsey tried to pull things together with another time-out. The Ephs came back with a vengeance, pushing seven points versus Hamilton's two. As Hamilton neared their game point, the Ephs fought hard and close behind, closing the gap to 23-10, pressing Hamilton to call a time-out. Amanda Schott and Benell sprawled to defend the backline, but a final kill by Emma Lonadier won Hamilton the second set, 25-22.
The Ephs came back from a three point deficit to tie up the score 6-6 early in the third set. A few lead exchanges ensued, and the score entered double digits at 10-10. Williams dealt Hamilton heavy blows, pushing ahead for the first time at 14-12, when Hamilton called a time-out. The Ephs continued to fire away coming out of time-out and forced the Continentals to call another when the score reached 18-13, Williams. Katherine Lane and Farley rejected a Continental attack with a big block, charging ahead to 21-16. A kill by Raea Rasmussen brought the Ephs to game point, and a Hamilton error won the Ephs the third set, 25-19.
Again both teams started the set exchanging points one by one. A service ace by Emily O'Day followed by a kill by Catherine Egan scared Hamilton into calling a time-out at 5-3, Williams. A dome block by Farley and Egan welcomed the Continentals after time-out, and two consecutive service aces by Spellman seemed to rattle Hamilton, who quickly called their second time-out, 10-4, Williams. The Eph front row continued to shut down the net, and brought the hammer down on unreceptive platforms. Williams broke 20 points thanks to kills by Rasmussen and Jasuta, and Hamilton errors brought O'Day to the service line, 22-14, Williams. Lane's quick middle attack brought the Ephs to game point, and a final kill by Jasuta bounced the ball to the back of the bleachers, ending the last set 25-18.
Sophomore outside Tori Jasuta, back on the court after her absence Tuesday, racked up a match high of 18 kills backed by a team-high 12 digs. Raea Rasmussen gathered an impressive .353 hitting percentage with 9 kills. The Ephs also faired well on the service line, with Anna Spellman, Emily O'Day, and Ryan Farley each earning two service aces. Ryan Farley, Catherine Egan, and Katherine Lane defended the net with two blocks each.
The Continentals were led by outside Courtney Brown, who scored 14 kills. Plays were dished out by Kyndal Burdin with 30 assists while libero Anna Brown collected 20 digs.
The Ephs will continue their big home weekend tomorrow afternoon, playing Middlebury College and SUNY Potsdam at 2pm and 4pm in Chandler Gym.