By Steven Merritt
ELMIRA – The Vassar College Women’s Volleyball team headed north for a road tri-match at Elmira as the Brewers fell in a back and forth 25-15, 22-25, 25-21, 18-25, 8-15 five-setter against Hartwick before rebounding with a 24-26, 25-14, 25-17, 25-18 victory over the host Soaring Eagles in the nightcap. Vassar moves to 9-8 overall on the season.
Vassar Vs Hartwick
The Hawks took an early 9-5 lead following aces from Kaleigh Brandow and Staecia Silofau along with a kill from Shaelyn Thornton.
Following Hartwick’s lead sitting at 10-9, the Brewers rattled off six straight points and were led by two kills from first year Maura McAusland and two aces from classmate T Petro.
Hartwick trimmed the lead down to 16-13 on a block from Niah Reeves and Silofau but Vassar expanded its lead to 21-14 following kills from first year Holland Kaplan, junior Frannie Anthony-Brumfield and an ace from McAusland.
Vassar earned the first set victory after an ace from sophomore Molly Delahunty and a winner from junior Julia Hale.
Hartwick earned an early 7-4 lead following winners from Thornton, Shelby Swartz and Sarah Petz.
The lead grew to 10-5 on a kill from Reeves before Vassar trimmed down to one at 13-12 following two kills from Delahunty.
The Hawks battled back and pushed its lead to 19-15 on an ace from Vanessa Seymour but the Brewers cut the lead down to one again on a winner from Anthony-Brumfield.
Hartwick took the second set on back-to-back kills from Silofau and Swartz.
Vassar took an early 6-1 lead as McAusland buried two winners along with a winner each from Kaplan and Hale.
Hartwick drew even at eight following back-to-back aces from Brandow along with Swartz kill.
The Brewers pushed its lead to 17-14 on a kill from sophomore Melia Voss before the Hawks tied the set at 20 on a kill from Seymour.
Vassar scored the final four points of the set on kills from Kaplan and Hale to take a 2-1 lead.
The Brewers took a 4-2 lead following a kill and block from McAusland along with an ace from Petro.
Vassar’s lead grew to 8-4 on a winner from Kaplan before Hartwick answered with a 7-1 run, led by kills from Seymour, Reeves and Silofau.
The Brewers got the lead down to three on a kill from Hale at 18-15 but the Hawks lead grew to 21-15 following aces from Seymour.
Hartwick pushed the match to a fifth set on back-to-back winners from Silofau.
The Hawks earned five of the first six points of the set as Reeves, Silofau and Brandow buried winners along with an ace from Petz.
Hartwick’s lead grew to 9-3 on a block from Swartz and Brandow before Vassar scored three straight, including a kill from Delahunty, to cut it to 9-6.
The Hawks went on a 7-2 run to close the set as a block from Seymour and Reeves clinched the five set victory.
For The Brewers
McAusland led Vassar with 16 kills, two aces, three blocks and nine digs while Hale recorded 10 kills and four blocks.
Delahunty added seven kills, two aces and two blocks along with Kaplan and Anthony-Brumfield tallying six kills each.
Voss finished with 40 assists, eight digs, two blocks, three kills and two aces for the Brewers and sophomore Ellie Kogan lifted nine digs.
For The Hawks
Silofau recorded a team-high 14 kills along with 15 digs, four blocks and three aces.
Swartz added 11 kills and four blocks while Reeves buried nine kills and tallied three blocks.
Thornton recorded eight kills and 12 digs and Brandow registered six kills, 16 digs and three aces.
Seymour handed out a match-high 45 assists and lifted 16 digs while Petz lifted a match-high 18 digs.
Vassar Vs Elmira
Vassar went ahead 9-5 following two aces from McAusland and a winner from Hale.
Elmira drew even at 14 apiece following five straight service aces from Makenna Clark.
Vassar took a 17-15 lead on a winner from Hale before the Soaring Eagles answered to take a 22-19 lead on a kill from Morgan Richardson.
The Brewers tied it up at 23 all after kills from Anthony-Brumfield and McAusland and tied it again at 24 on a block from Voss and Anthony-Brumfield.
Kills from Richardson and Maddie Boucher pushed the Soaring Eagles ahead 26-24 to take the first set.
Vassar jumped out to a 7-2 lead early as junior Hailey Hayes notched two kills and an ace along with a winner from junior Morgan Miller.
Elmira cut the lead down to two following an ace from Richardson until the Brewers answered with kills from McAusland, Hayes and Anthony-Brumfield to go ahead 12-7.
Another ace from Richardson cut the lead down to 16-13 before Vassar scored three straight, capped by a kill from McAusland and a block from Hale and McAusland to force an Elmira timeout.
The Brewers cruised to the second set victory as they scored the final six points of the set, led by two aces from Petro, three winners from McAusland and one kill from sophomore Rebecca Gutierrez.
Vassar scored the first eight points of the set as Voss landed four aces along with kills from Gutierrez and Hayes.
The Brewers expanded its lead to 14-4 on a kill from Hale and a block from Hayes.
Elmira answered to cut the lead down to four at 15-11 following three kills from Boucher and an ace from Caroline Barr.
Vassar scored the final four points of the set as Hayes’ ace clinched the set victory.
The Soaring Eagles took an early 7-2 lead as Gabriela Rodriquez landed an ace along with kills from Clark and Allison Hasty.
Vassar battled back as the Brewers scored nine straight points to take a 14-10 lead with McAusland notching three kills along with two blocks from Hale and junior Molly Ardren.
Elmira trimmed the lead down to three multiple times in the set as Hasty’s kill cut the Brewers lead to 20-17.
Vassar scored four straight to close the set as Ardren and Anthony-Brumfield each had a kill and combined for two blocks.
For The Brewers
McAusland buried 19 kills to lead Vassar and also added three aces, six digs and two blocks.
Hale recorded nine kills and five blocks while Hayes added eight kills, 12 digs and two aces.
Miller finished with six kills and eight digs while Kogan lifted a team-high 12 digs.
Voss handed out 37 assists and added five aces, three blocks and six digs.
For The Soaring Eagles
Boucher notched a team-high 13 kills and 15 digs while Richardson added eight kills, two aces and 10 digs.
Clark completed an all-around match with seven kills, seven aces and 12 digs.
Asia Curkendall handed out a team-high 26 assists along with Rodriquez lifting 12 digs.
Vassar returns to conference play on Wednesday evening as they travel to Bard for a 6:00 p.m. match.