Williamstown, MA—Williams volleyball (22-4, 8-2 NESCAC) fell in their final regular conference match against Bowdoin College (20-7, 6-4 NESCAC) in a tough five-set match. The set scores were 25-18, 27-25, 25-19, 22-15, 11-15.
This afternoon was homecoming for the Ephs as well as senior day for Williams Volleyball. The team celebrated their four senior members, outside Claire Miller, defensive specialist Emily O'Day, middle blocker Raea Rasmussen and setter and defensive specialist Amanda Schott for their four-year contributions. The Ephs also thanked their senior volunteer assistant coach and statistician, Gregory Becker.
The Ephs started hot in the first set, taking the first four points. A serving streak from Tori Jasuta took the Ephs to double digits, and the Polar Bears called the first time-out after a few errors set the score at 14-10, Williams. A dome block from Raea Rasmussen and Katherine Lane followed by a service ace from setter Ryan Farley maintained the Ephs' four-point lead. The Polar Bears called their second time-out when a kill by Claire Miller set the score at 23-18. Miller and Catherine Egan rejected an attack from the Polar Bears to bring the Ephs to game point, and a final service ace by Emily O'Day scored the team the first set, 25-18.
A slow start found the Ephs early in the second set as they trailed 4-8 before a quick middle attack from Lane brought the Ephs close behind at 9-10. A service ace from Jasuta coming out of time-out tied the score for the first time at fifteen before the Polar Bears scored a side-out and pushed a four-point run. Williams fought back until they trailed by one point, pressuring Bowdoin to call a time-out at 19-20. Three consecutive heavy kills from Jasuta tied the score again at twenty-three, and a middle block from Rasmussen and Miller took the Ephs to 25-24. The Polar Bears fought back, swinging away to tie the score again at twenty-five before scoring two points, winning Bowdoin the second set, 25-27.
A service ace from Farley opened up the third set, and the Ephs went on a four-point run to tie the score at 6-6. The Polar Bears inched ahead, but strong defense from the Ephs tied the score at eleven and again at thirteen. A kill from Miller, assisted by Jasuta, gained the Ephs their first lead of the set, and Bowdoin called for a breather when the score reached 15-13. Williams pushed five more points before the Polar Bears called another time-out at 20-14. A backrow kill from Jasuta brought the team to game point, and the Ephs captured the third set 25-19.
The teams went point-for-point early in the fourth set until the Polar Bears took the lead, 10-14 and the Ephs called a time-out. Williams inched back slowly, shrinking the point deficit to 15-17, forcing Bowdoin to call a time-out. A kill from the Polar Bears broke twenty, but the Ephs were close behind at 17-20. The Ephs fought on to 20-13, but an error brought the Polar Bears to game point. Williams pushed two more points before a Bowdoin scored a kill from the pin, downing the Ephs in the fourth set 23-25.
The fifth set saw a tied score alternating with a Polar Bear lead up until Jasuta smashed a kill for 7-7. An Eph error made Bowdoin the first to eight and the teams switched sides. The Ephs called a time-out at 7-9 and managed to regroup as Lane scored a kill in the deep corner of Bowdoin's court. A big block from the middle landed the score at 10-12 and both teams fought on. An error gave Bowdoin game point, and the Polar Bears scored a kill, taking the final set 11-15.
Williams led the way with a whopping 50 kills, 24 of which were from sophomore powerhouse Tori Jasuta. Junior setter Ryan Farley led the team with 38 assists and three service aces. Jasuta also scored 4 service aces and led the defense with 14 digs. Seniors Raea Rasmussen and Claire Miller protected the net, gathering 5 and 4 blocks, respectively.
The Polar Bears' attack was led by Christi Jewett with 15 kills and Michelle Albright with 6 service aces. Three defenders broke double-digit digs, as Katie Doherty, Quincy Leech, and Michelle Albright gathered 17, 15, and 12 digs respectively.
Although the Ephs faced a tough match in the last regular conference match, Coach Christi Kelsey reassured that the team "will bounce back and get back in the gym Monday to start preparing for the conference tournament ahead." Looking ahead to the NESCAC conference she added, "should be lots of exciting volleyball."
The NESCAC championship tournament will commence next Friday at Tufts University in Medford, MA. The match schedule is shown below.
2014 VOLLEYBALL CHAMPIONSHIP
Friday, November 7 at Tufts
Court 1: #8 Trinity at #1 Tufts – 5:00 p.m.
Court 2: #7 Hamilton vs. #2 Williams – 5:00 p.m.
Court 1: #6 Connecticut College vs. #3 Amherst – 8:00 p.m.
Court 2: #5 Bowdoin vs. #4 Middlebury – 8:00 p.m.
Saturday, November 8 at Tufts
Center Court: Winner of #1 | #8 vs. Winner of #4 | #5 – 1:00 p.m.
Center Court: Winner of #2 | #7 vs. Winner of #3 | #6 – 3:30 p.m.
Sunday, November 9 at Tufts
Championship – 12:00 p.m.