Tufts Volleyball Drops NESCAC Match at Amherst in Three Sets

Hayley Hopper had 13's in kills and digs for Tufts

Recap courtesy of Amherst College

AMHERST – Four Jeffs tallied double-digit kills on Saturday as the Amherst volleyball team defeated Tufts, 3-1 at LeFrak Gymnasium. Leading the way was Maggie Danner who posted a match-high 16 kills and added 13 digs.

Saturday's win ended a three-game skid against the Jumbos as Amherst improved to 10-5 overall and 3-2 in the NESCAC. Tufts has dropped two straight and is now 11-6 on the season and 3-2 in league play.

The Jeffs won by scores of 25-23, 15-25, 25-18 and 25-19. Nicole Gould, Lauren Antion and Samantha Newby registered 14, 13 and 10 kills respectively while Nicole Carter dished out 50 assists to control the offense. Junior Hayley Hopper posted a team-high 13 kills for Tufts while classmate Isabel Kuhel added 11.

On the defensive side, five Jeffs registered double-digit digs led by sophomore Katie Washaw's match-high 26. Carter completed the double-double with 12 digs and Newby was a force at net with six total blocks. Four Jumbo players recorded double-digit digs with sophomore Carolina Berger leading the way with 24. Classmate Kyra Baum added 20 to go along with her 41 assists.

Amherst opened the match on a 4-0 run, but Tufts responded to tie it 5-5, setting the tone early for a set that featured several lead changes. Following a block from Juliana Goodbar and Mary Maccabee, the Jeffs were forced to call a timeout, trailing 16-12. Coming out of the break, the Jeffs outscored Tufts 10-6 to tie the set at 22-22. Tufts took the lead, but Amherst retaliated with three-straight as Antion tallied a kill to take the first set 25-22.

The Jumbos retaliated in a big way, rallying off 11 unanswered to take a commanding lead in the second stanza. Amherst went on an eight-point run of its own, but the deficit was too large to overcome as Tufts took set two, 25-15.

The Jeffs trailed early in the third game, but a kill from Antion tied it at 6-6. The teams traded points often until a Tufts attack error sparked a 5-0 Jeffs run as they pulled ahead 21-16. The Jumbos managed two more points, but two kills and a block from Newby sealed the set (25-18) as Amherst took a 2-1 lead in the match.

With the momentum in the Jeffs' favor, Amherst jumped out to an 11-8 lead to force a Tufts timeout in the fourth set. The Jeffs eventually pulled ahead 20-11 and despite a 7-2 run by the Jumbos, they would take the set 25-18 to claim a 3-1 win. Amherst has now won eight of its last 10 contests.

The Jeffs are back in action Wednesday to host Westfield State in a non-conference match starting at 7 p.m. Tufts returns to the court Friday for an 8 pm contest at Bates.

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