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Volleyball Notches Third Straight Conference Sweep at Muhlenberg

Dina Kosyagin
Dina Kosyagin

ALLENTOWN, Pa. - The Haverford College volleyball team (16-3, 5-1 CC) looked poised in a 3-0 sweep of Muhlenberg on Wednesday night at Memorial Hall. Haverford held Muhlenberg (9-9, 2-4 CC) to a negative hitting percentage in each of the three sets to cruise to a 25-23, 25-17, 25-16 triumph.

Haverford has sprinted out to its best 19-match start since the 2009 team went 17-2 through its first 19 matches. That team achieved that feat en route to the Centennial Conference Championship and an NCAA Regional semifinals berth, finishing 31-4 overall. 

This current iteration of the Fords were tested in the first set, as Muhlenberg looked comfortable on its home floor. Haverford called for timeout with the Mules up 12-8, and were searching for answers as a trio of attack errors gave the hosts some early momentum. Undaunted, Haverford rallied back to tie the score at 18-18, hanging right with the Mules thanks in part to Kendall Otridge and Abby Holland finding the floor for some key kills in the stretch. Muhlenberg went back ahead 22-19, but the Fords had another answer, rallying to cut the lead with Dina Kosyagin and Taylor Jones each finding the floor with Isabel Schwam at the service line. A Muhlenberg service error tied the score at 23-23, and a kill from Kosyagin gave Haverford set point before a Mules attack error sent Haverford to a come from behind game one victory. 

The second set was more straightforward for the Fords, as the squad jumped out to a 16-7 lead, with a 9-0 run again keyed by Schwam at the service line. The run was too much for Muhlenberg to withstand, with Haverford frustrating the hosts into frequent attack errors down the stretch in a 25-17 win. 

In the third, it was again a 12-5 spurt to start things that handed the visitors some early momentum. Muhlenberg had some late salvos to cut the lead back to six at 19-13, but Haverford rattled off a 5-1 run down the stretch to pull away with a renewed focus on the strong chance to secure the sweep. Caroline Jones and Taylor Jones teamed up for a block in that sequence before Caroline Lucas was subbed into the contest to deliver the final serve of the night as Sara Hunsberger found a kill off the over pass to send Haverford to its fifth CC victory of the season.

Kosyagin had a match-best 13 kills to pace Haverford on the evening, while Hunsberger was a key contributor with 31 assists and a block. Juliet Young had a match-best 17 digs in a solid defensive effort. The Fords have now swept the Mules in back-to-back seasons and are 26-12 all-time against Muhlenberg. 

Haverford returns to action on Friday night with a 7 p.m. first serve at Eastern in a non-conference tilt. Earlier this season, Haverford handed the Eagles their only loss of the 2021 season thus far.