October 11, 2007

Volleyball Falls to Binghamton

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Forget romantic or mysterious, sometimes déjà vu can be a bad thing, a very bad thing indeed. Cornell found this out the hard way Tuesday night. The Red took a break from Ivy League play but not from the loss column, as volleyball was decisively defeated 3-0 by the Bearcats. With this loss, its third such sweep in a row, Cornell moved to 4-9 for the season.
After three-and-out matches against Penn and Princeton Friday and Saturday night, the Tuesday contest against smaller Binghamton must have seemed a slight respite. But while Cornell may have tried to capitalize on a rare chance to relax, Binghamton was all business. The Bearcats were ready for the Ivy opponent and came out hard. They grabbed an early lead in the first game of the match, a lead they would then hold the entire game, quickly taking that game 30-13.
Binghamton showed no signs of stopping as they steamrolled into the second game, taking a 20-10 lead that proved impossible for Cornell to overcome. The Big Red scored six more points before they were defeated a second time, by a game score of 30-16.
Finally showing some signs of life, Cornell earned a 12-9 advantage in the first half of the third game, but could not break down the Binghamton players, who quickly tied the game back up, and then battled back and forth with Cornell for points before pulling ahead at the end — winning the game 30-26, and with it the match.
Binghamton led Cornell in all major totals on the stat sheet, including hitting percentage, where they had a .025 to .301 advantage, as well as kills, assists and aces. Cornell blocked three balls compared to Binghamton’s 15 total defensive stops.
Freshman outside hitter Alessa Cekauskas got her own turn in the spotlight however, distinguishing herself from the other standout freshmen Katie Marshall and Erin McCarthy with a team-leading 13 kills. Marshall ended the night with eight kills of her own. In a match with understandably low personal numbers, other Cornell notables included sophomore libero Meghan Mushovic who recorded 14 digs along with two aces.
Although Cornell will not play a second match this season against the non-conference Bearcats, it will have a chance for revenge against both Penn and Princeton — whom they were swept by this weekend—when the teams come to Cornell’s Newman Arena. A chance that Collins-Parker says the team is eagerly waiting.
“The teams are definitely beatable,” she said. And every team relishes a good home court advantage.
“I think that most teams are better at home,” Collins-Parker said. We have confidence at home, we don’t want to lose in front of our fans.”
Cornell can next be seen this weekend at home for a Homecoming double-header against Harvard and Dartmouth.
As part of the weekend’s festivities, and in honor of National Breast Cancer Awareness month, the volleyball team will be hosting a breast cancer fundraising event called “Passionately Pink For a Cure” on during its Friday match. The team is encouraging all fans to come to the match in their best pink clothing, as well as to make a five dollar suggested donation to the Susan G. Komen foundation, which is working to find a cure for breast cancer. Each fan that donates will receive a “Passionately Pink For a Cure” commemorative pin.