Volleyball stumbles in NESCAC semifinal

On Saturday, volleyball (15-12, 7-3 in the NESCAC) fell to top-seeded Conn. College (24-2) in the semifinals of the NESCAC championship after upsetting Amherst 3-0 in the quarterfinals the day before.

The women started their first set strong, pulling even with Conn. College at 6-6 with blocks by Catherine Egan ’16 and Raea Rasmussen ’15 and an ace by Amanda Schott ’15. But Conn. College scored four quick points and took control of the set, gaining the victory 25-21.

In the second and third sets, the Camels came away with a 25-19 victory and a 25-16 win, despite strong play by many of the Ephs. With the 3-0 loss to Conn. College, the women ended their NESCAC tournament run and their season.

Prior to Saturday’s loss to Conn. College, the women upset Amherst in the quarterfinals of the NESCAC tournament. The women won in style, sweeping Amherst in three convincing sets for their first win against the Jeffs since October of 2009.

The Ephs took the first set 25-19 in a cohesive team effort. In the second set, the women jumped out to a 9-4 lead that they never relinquished en route to a 25-15 win.

Amherst refused to go down quietly in the third set, keeping things close at 20-19. However, Williams ultimately prevailed 25-22. It was an all-around team effort: co-captain Emily Doll ’14 added 11 kills, Claire Miller ’15 notched 11 and Egan recorded eight. Egan and Emily O’Day ’15 tied for the team lead in digs with an impressive total of 12 apiece. Setter Ryan Farley ’16 dished out 44 assists to lead the team.

“Our team played incredibly well to earn a win against a strong Amherst squad on Friday night,” Head Coach Christi Kelsey said. “In the semifinal match on Saturday against Conn. College, we continued to play solid volleyball, but to [Conn. College’s] credit, they came up with some big points and plays in key moments to win the match.”

The team graduates three seniors this year: co-captain Haley Eagon ’13, Lauren Agoubi ’13 and Mika Nakashige ’13. The women will also lose their student assistant coach, Alex Verschoor-Kirss ’13.