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Volleyball faces hot New Paltz at Wellesley tournament

WELLESLEY, Mass. -- SUNY New Paltz swept the Bates College volleyball team 3-0 (25-11, 25-19, 25-20) Friday night in the opening day of action at the Wellesley Invitational. The Bobcats drop to 9-7 with their first non-conference loss of the year, while the Hawks pushed their record to 19-5.

New Paltz scored early and often in game one, using serving runs from Dana Kindelmann and Stephanie Bova to take a 13-6 lead. A second run from Kindelmann stretched the lead to 21-9 as the Hawks cruised to a 25-11 win.

New Paltz took a slight edge early in set two, using a short run from Melinda DiGiovanna to take a 7-3 lead. Bates stayed close, trading sideouts until four straight points from sophomore Olivia Schow (Costa Mesa, Calif.) trimmed the lead to 20-19. But the Hawks answered by winning the next five rallies to seal the 25-19 win.

In game three, the Hawks once again jumped out early, taking a 6-0 lead before Bates got on the board. New Paltz extended the lead to 14-7 on a run from Stephanie Skrobach, but the Bobcats battled back with three straight from Schow and two from first-year Eliza Pyne (Atherton, Calif.) to trim the lead to 22-18. New Paltz stopped the bleeding with two more serving points from Skrobach and held on for the 25-20 win.

For Bates, sophomore Grace Haessler (Portland, Ore.) led all players with 27 assists, while also picking up 10 digs. First-year Nicole Russell (Boca Raton, Fla.) had a match-high 18 digs while senior Liz Leberman (Concord, N.H.) and senior Tess Dokus (Fairport, N.Y.) recorded totals of seven and six kills. Pyne picked up three blocks, while senior Avery Masters (Mill Valley, Calif.) contributed two.

New Paltz was led by Brittany Coyle with nine kills and five blocks. Alison Kiernan tallied seven kills with Bova dishing out 25 assists. Loren Crabbe was the digs leader, recording 11 in the match, while Kindelmann added five blocks for the Hawks. Bova and DiGiovanna added two services aces each in the victory.

Bates continues play at the Wellesley Invitational Saturday with a 12 p.m. match against Endicott and a 6 p.m. match against Bridgewater State.

BATES STATS: New Paltz 3, Bates 0