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Volleyball team sweeps Endicott, Bridgewater State







WELLESLEY, Mass. -- The Bates College volleyball team swept Endicott and Bridgewater State by 3-0 scores on Saturday at the Wellesley College Invitational, giving the Bobcats a 2-1 record in the tournament and raising their record to 11-7.

Endicott dropped to 14-12 with its loss earlier in the day, which came by set scores of 27-25, 25-20 and 25-17.

In a very tight first set, neither team could gain an advantage as the squads traded sideouts throughout the game. Bates finally opened a slim 22-20 lead, but Endicott tied the score at 24-24 with two clutch points during Mollie Postma's serve, forcing the set into overtime. Bates answered with two quick points from senior Liz Leberman (Concord, N.H.) to take the first set 27-25.

Endicott snatched the early lead in game two as Brittany Phillips strung together six straight points for a 6-3 edge. Bates surged back, knotting the score at 10-10 before taking a 13-11 advantage. The Bobcats extended their lead to 22-16, courtesy of tough serving from first-year libero Nicole Russell (Boca Raton, Fla.), before taking the second set 25-20.

The teams traded sideouts through the opening rallies of set three, until a three-point run from Falyn Torelli gave Endicott a 13-10 lead. Two rallies later, junior Rachel Colby (Willimantic, Conn.) led Bates on an eight-point run to break the set open at 21-15.  The Bobcats scored four of the next six points to take the set 25-17, sealing the sweep.

Steph Wiese led Endicott at the net with 12 kills. Allison Murphy tallied 15 assists, while Ashley Norley recorded 16 digs. Elyse Barbour and Sarah Van Haaren notched three and two blocks, respectively.

Leberman led the Bobcats at the net with 12 kills. Senior Avery Masters (Mill Valley, Calif.) added eight kills, while first-year Olivia Schow (Costa Mesa, Calif.) and senior Tess Dokus (Fairport, N.Y.) chipped in six each. Russell led the defense with 14 digs, as sophomore Grace Haessler (Portland, Ore.) guided the offense with 37 assists.

In Saturday evening's match against Bridgewater State, the Bobcats won by set scores of 25-22, 25-15 and 25-21, dipping the Bears to 5-15 this season.

Bridgewater opened the match with three straight points, but Bates replied with four to take an early lead. The teams traded sideouts until late in the game, when Bates won four of five rallies to take a 23-19 lead enroute to a 25-22 win.

Set two was a back-and-forth affair through the first half of the game, but Bates strung together four straight points to take a 15-12 lead. Two rotations later, Schow served seven straight points to finish the game at 25-15, giving the Bobcats a 2-0 lead in the match.

Bates took a 6-3 lead early in the third set, but the Bears' Jennifer Shaw sparked a three-point run to tie the game at 10-10. Four rotations later, Brianne Cobb gave Bridgewater a 19-16 lead with four straight points from the service line. Bates answered with four from first-year Caroline Gattuso (North Reading, Mass.) to take a 20-19 advantage. The Bears snagged two more points before Leberman served out the set for a 25-21 win, sealing the sweep for Bates.

Shelly DePina led the Bears with nine kills and two blocks. Cobb tallied 11 digs, while Natalie Cohen dished out 11 assists. Kristina Campbell led all players with five aces.

For Bates, Masters led the attack with 10 kills, followed by Leberman with eight and Dokus with seven. Leberman also recorded 12 digs, while Schow talled five aces. Haessler distributed 28 assists in the win.

Bates will host Colby on Wednesday at 7 p.m. in the teams' NESCAC matchup. The Bobcats are 2-0 in head-to-head play against the Mules this season.

BATES STATS: Bates 3, Endicott 0

BATES STATS: Bates 3, Bridgewater State 0