November 9, 2001

Volleyball Hosts Foes Brown, Yale

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This weekend, the women’s volleyball team will look to avenge two losses that started its four-match slide out of first place in the league.

Currently tied for fourth place, Cornell (13-9, 5-5 Ivy) will face Yale (9-10, 3-7) and Brown (13-9, 8-2) tonight and tomorrow. Both opponents are coming off 2-0 weekends, but while the Bears are only a game out of first place, Yale is sixth and looking to continue to improve its record.

Whatever momentum drove the Red to its 5-1 start in the conference has disappeared in its last four losing efforts. Sparking the downturn was its match with Brown two weekends ago that knocked it out of sole possession of the top spot. Cornell fell in three straight games, 30-23, 30-23, and 30-16, and hit only .075 in the match. Statistically, Brown and Cornell widely differed in digs only. The Red tallied 34, while the Bears notched 54, a difference that significantly lead to the outcome.

Following this shut-out, the Red faced Yale, at that time the worst team in the league with an 0-7 mark, and seemed primed to retain its position in the standings.

Undoubtedly shaken from the previous night’s defeat, Cornell committed 38 errors to the Bulldogs’ 20, which gave them a .000 percentage to the victor’s .231. Yale was deserving of credit in the win as

it combined for an amazing 19 team blocks on the night.

Tonight, the Red will host Yale in a prime opportunity for the squad to

regain confidence.

The Bulldogs are coming off a three-game win streak, starting with the

victory over Cornell, followed by a 3-0 victory over Dartmouth (7-13, 2-8)

and a 3-1 success over Harvard (9-11, 2-8).

Against the Big Green, Yale took the match with razor thin advantages in

each of the three games with scores of 36-34, 30-23, and 30-28. The Bulldogs dove for an impressive 75 digs, but committed 24 errors for a .147 hitting mark. In the win over Harvard, Yale hit .243 with 85 digs to come out ahead after four games with scores of 30-28, 29-31, 30-27 and 30-22. In the fourth round, Yale netted a solid .375 hitting percentage with only four errors.

Junior outside hitter Dana Loberg has performed impressively all season,

and last weekend contributed 21 digs and 12 kills against Dartmouth and 23

against Harvard. She is eighth in the league with averaging 3.19 digs per

game. Freshman outside hitter Kelly McAlerney was named the rookie of the

week for her consistent play. After notching 11 kills and five digs against

the Big Green, McAlerney tallied 10 digs and a team-high 17 kills against

the Crimson.

On Saturday afternoon, the Bears will march onto the East Hill. Like the

Bulldogs,

Brown is coming off a successful weekend against Harvard and Dartmouth,

recording 3-0 and 3-1 victories, respectively. Against the Crimson, the

Bears jumped out early, winning the first game by a decisive score of 30-13

on a .581 hitting mark, followed by scores of 30-29 and 30-21 to close out

the match. Notably, no Brown player had a negative hitting percentage and

the team finished with an overpowering .394 hitting mark.

The following afternoon, Brown disposed of Dartmouth in a similar fashion.

After taking the first game, but dropping the next, the Bears came roaring

back in the last two to take the game with scores of 30-27, 22-30, 30-26,

and 30-12.

In the two matches, the Bears had contributions from numerous players.

Junior outside hitter Ceneca Calvert was named the Ivy player of the week

after posting hitting percentages of .421 and .261 against Harvard and

Dartmouth, respectively. She totaled 13 digs and eight kills against the

Crimson, and 21 digs and 16 kills against the Big Green.

Against Harvard, junior middle blocker Jessie Cooper posted 15 kills and

three blocks on .429 hitting, then added 14 kills and three blocks against

Dartmouth. Cooper is eighth in the league with a .270 hitting percentage and

sixth in the league averaging 3.89 kills per game.

If the Red is disappointed about its performance this season, it can regain

some respect with a win against Brown, as that would knock the Bears one

game further out of reach of the Ivy title. Considering that, after this

weekend, only two Ivy matches remain, a loss to the Red could ruin the Bears

hopes of a championship. A win against Yale would slow the Bulldogs attempt

at overtaking the Red in the standings.

Tonight’s match with Yale will be held at 7 p.m., while tomorrow’s contest

with Brown will be at 4 p.m. Both battles will take place in Newman Arena.


Archived article by Katherine Granish