HAVERFORD, Pa. - On the final day of the Haverford Invitational, the Haverford College Volleyball team (3-1) split a pair of matches, falling in a five-set seesaw battle with Stevenson (4-0) before blanking Misericordia by a 3-0 final to conclude tournament action.
Stevenson 3, Haverford 2
The two sides played spirited volleyball as the Mustangs forced extra points before Haverford was able to pull away in the first set. The two sides did not have much separation in the first frame, but Jadyn Elliott and Dina Kosyagin teamed up for a huge block, setting the stage for Elliott's kill off the over pass for a 26-24 victory.
The second set saw Stevenson looking hungry to equalize, opening up a 20-12 advantage. The Fords made things interesting down the stretch with Kosyagin and Taylor Jones each contributing kills to cut the lead down to seven on two occasions, but the Mustangs put away the set behind 10 kills. The third went to the Fords, with Haverford opening up a 22-17 advantage before Stevenson tightened things to a one-point set at 23-22. Kendall Otridge notched a kill as Haverford earned serve, and Otridge then teamed up with Jones for an emphatic block to close the set at 25-22. Stevenson again equalized in the fourth, reversing Haverford's extra-point victory from set one with Shannon Baily proving to be a difference maker down the stretch.
Haverford struggled to find its rhythm in the fifth set as Stevenson came out on fire, hitting .571 in the frame. The Fords trimmed the 11-4 Mustangs advantage to just five at 14-9, but ultimately the offensive prowess of Stevenson in the set allowed the visitors to escape with the match.
Otridge had 17 kills and Taylor Jones continued to impress with 13 kills, nine blocks and seven digs. Her nine blocks are tied for the third-most in program history. Abby Holland made her collegiate debut, notching eight kills on 31 swings. Sara Hunsberger added 42 assists and four blocks, posting a double-double with 14 digs. Juliet Young paced the way with 30 digs and seven assists, while Isabel Schwam also tallied double-digit digs, collecting 17.
Haverford 3, Misericordia 0
The second match of the day saw Haverford show off its depth and versatility against the Cougars. In the first, set the Fords captured a 25-17 victory before working in the collegiate debuts of Gabrielle Fontanilla, Jenna Jones, and Caroline Lucas. The trio helped pave the way down the stretch, with Fontanilla tallying 12 assists and four digs to go with a pair of blocks from the setter spot. Lucas added five kills while Jones tallied her first collegiate kill against Misericordia.
Eight different Fords recorded a kill in the victory, with Juliet Young adding 20 digs on the defensive end. Haverford held Misericordia to a negative hitting percentage in a stifling second set, closing out the stanza with a strong serving run from Tea Kuzbari and a blocking effort led by Jadyn Elliott and Jenna Jones.
In the third, Misericordia hung close with Haverford, tying the score at 14-14 and briefly taking a 16-14 advantage. Undaunted, the Fords powered back behind Elena Filograna at the service line, with Taylor Jones and Fontanilla teaming up for back-to-back blocks. A 10-2 Haverford run to close the match proved to be the difference, with Elliott posting back-to-back kills to hand volleyball its first sweep of 2021.
The Fords will now return for another home tournament, the second edition of the Ford Invitational. Action begins in Gooding '84 Arena on Friday, September 10 with evening action against Eastern (5 p.m.) and SUNY Geneseo (7 p.m.) before Saturday afternoon matches with Scranton (12 p.m.) and Cabrini (2 p.m.).
Haverford Invitational All-Tournament Team
S, Mackenzie Blevins, Stevenson
RS, Sophia Eckerd, Stevenson
OH, Piper Connors, Stevenson
RS, Charlotte Leon, Stockton
OH, Amanda Dake, Coast Guard
MB, Taylor Jones, Haverford
S, Sara Hunsberger, Haverford
Haverford Invitational Tournament MVP
OH, Piper Connors, Stevenson