Volleyball Comes Back After First Set Loss to Top Bowdoin, 3-1

Mackenzie Bright led the Jumbos with 12 kills Saturday.

MEDFORD – After falling in the first set, the Tufts women's volleyball team came back and topped defending NESCAC Champion Bowdoin, 3-1, in Cousens Gym on Saturday afternoon.  The Jumbos were led by 12 kills from sophomore Mackenzie Bright and 11 from freshman Brigid Bell.

With the win the Jumbos move to 9-1 overall this year, with a perfect 3-0 mark in NESCAC play.  Bowdoin falls to 6-4 overall with a 0-3 record in NESCAC play this season.

Bowdoin came out in the first set and took an early lead and the Polar Bears were able to hold on to that lead for the duration of the first set.  The Polar Bears were dominant in the first set, leading by as many as eight and earning the 25-19 win to take a 1-0 lead.

But, the Jumbos responded in the second set.  With the slight 8-7 lead the Jumbos scored seven points behind the serve of freshman Kelly Klimo to take a 15-7 lead.  The Polar Bears did answer, trying to make a comeback and at one point coming within three.  But, the Jumbos held on to the 25-20 win to even the match at one.

It was the visitors who took the lead in the third set and held on to it for most of the first half.  The Jumbos tied things up at 16, and then took the lead.  Bowdoin would come within one, 20-19, but the Jumbos held on to the win, 25-23, taking a 2-1 lead in the match.

The Jumbos were the ones to take a lead in the fourth set, and built a sizable one, leading 22-10 when the Polar Bears made a comeback. The Polar Bears scored seven points behind the serve of Michelle Albright to get within six, 22-16, before the Jumbos notched another point.  The visitors would get close, but the Jumbos squeezed out a 25-23 win to take the match, 3-1.

Caroline Flaharty was the offensive leader for the Polar Bears with a match-high 18 kills.  Sydney Salle added eight kills and Khelsea Gordon turned in six kills.  Katie Doherty was the defensive leader with 26 digs and Michelle Albright added ten and Quincy Leech notched 11.  Leech took care of the setting, finishing with 31 assists.

For the Jumbos Bright was the leader with 12 kills and Bell turned in 11.  Senior co-captain Elizabeth Ahrens and freshman Christina Nwankpa each added eight kills and three blocks.  Freshman Kelly Klimo was the defensive leader with 25 digs and junior co-captain Alexandra Garrett added 13 digs as did sophomore Angela Yu.  Garrett also tallied three service aces.  Yu and freshman Rachel Furash took care of the setting, finishing with 28 and 16 assists, respectively.

The Polar Bears will be back in action on Friday when continue NESCAC play and travel to take on Trinity at 8 pm.  The Jumbos take the court again on Friday when they make the trip to Wesleyan for a 7 pm start.