The Red (3-1) started off its 2002 campaign by taking second place at the Crowne Plaza Classic Invitational in Pittsburgh this past weekend.
Cornell was victorious over Binghamton (3-8), Howard (2-11), and Providence (1-10) before falling to host Robert Morris (8-4). The Colonials, who went undefeated at their tournament, were the eventually winners.
“This was our first tournament of the season. It was a learning experience as we were getting to know each other how we play and our strengths and weaknesses,” said junior assistant captain Rachel Rice. “We learned a lot from this week and are looking to improve our record next week.”
Cornell opened the tournament on Saturday, facing local rival Binghamton and MEAC member Howard.
“The two teams were very comparable, in terms of ability and how they played,” Rice explained.
Cornell saw exceptional performances from All-Ivy outside hitters senior Angela Barbera and junior Debbie Quibell whom recorded 28 kills combined. Quibell also totaled 26 digs and recorded a double-double in both her matches.
The Red also found consistency in their backcourt. Setters Rice and freshman Whitney Fair had 56 and 51 assists respectively.
Though losing its first game to Binghamton 28-30, the Red quickly rebounded to win the next three games 30-27, 30-28, 30-28 to triumph in the match. Cornell outhit the Bearcats 69-54, while also holding the edge in digs 64-31.
Senior Captain Mary Margaret Moore had 11 digs of her own, while junior Ashley Stover and freshman hitter Heather Young each had three blocks. Stover also had 10 kills.
It was a similar story against Howard later in the day. Cornell rebounded from an early loss 27-30 before wining the next three games 30-17, 30-26, 30-21. Cornell dominated offensively recording 64 kills to the Bisons 34.
The Red had a good defensive effort by freshmen Kelly Kramer and Hayley Grieve with 24 and 11 digs respectively.
Yesterday the Red faced off against a winless Providence team before playing host Robert Morris. Greive and fellow freshman Rachel Adomat saw much action against Providence as Barbera and Quibell sat out the match.
The Red had little trouble dispensing of the Friars, sweeping them in three games and outhitting them for the match .240 to -.062. The Red then went on to face Robert Morris later that night.
“Our first three games were a build up to the fourth team. We were working towards playing a team that was much faster, that is more comparable to teams in the Ivy League play,” said Rice, who recorded 55 assists in the match.
A reversal from the matches on Saturday, the Red jumped out to an early victory 30-28, only to lose the next three games to the Colonials 24-30, 24-30, 22-30. Robert Morris held a .234 to .166 advantage in hitting, with six of the team’s seven hitters at .200 or better.
Quibell and Barbera posted solid numbers with 33 kills for the Red, while Stover added 11 kills.
The Red will return to action next week as the head down to Georgia to compete in the Georgia Tech invitational. There it will face Florida International, Alabama and Georgia Tech.
Archived article by Chris Callanan