Volleyball splits on day one of Amherst Classic

Brandeis l. Amherst, 0-3 (23-30, 29-31, 23-30)

Brandeis def. Middlebury, 3-0 (30-28, 30-26 and 30-26)

AMHERST, Mass. (taken from an Amherst press release) -- The Brandeis University volleyball team saw its six-match winning streak snapped today, falling in the opening match of the Amherst College Classic to the host Lord Jeffs, 3-0. The Judges rebounded to take their second match, by the same score against Middlebury College.

The crowd could immediately tell that Amherst and Brandeis were in for a close match, as game one featured several long rallies and impressive points. The Jeffs held on for the 30-23 victory in a game that featured six ties and three lead changes, and earned another narrow-margin victory in game two, winning 31-29. Amherst held as much as a nine-point lead and was in control for most of game three, as the Jeffs finished off the Judges with a 30-23 win.

Junior Lorraine Wingenbach (Buffalo, N.Y.) led the Judges with 12 kills and five service aces, while first-year Abby Blasco (Greeley, Colo.) totaled 26 assists. Junior Violette Ruggiero (Paradise Valley, Ariz.) racked up an impressive 20 digs to lead all players, with Blasco picking up 13 of her own.

Senior tri-captain Jaclyn DeMais (Hillsdale, NJ) led the Amherst attack with 14 kills, while Holton-Basaldua added eight of her own. DeMais also finished with a team-high 13 digs, with first-year Rachel Yorke (Los Angeles, CA) close behind with 12. Junior Sara Heller (La Canada, CA) racked up 36 assists and five service aces for the Jeffs, senior tri-captain Julie Berkley (Fullerton, CA) chipped in with six service aces and nine digs, and Wirth had a hand in eight of the Jeffs' blocks.

The Judges came out on the right end of a tight match with Middlebury in their second contest of the night. Brandeis squeaked by the Panthers in three games, winning 30-28, 30-26 and 30-26. Wingenbach put in another solid performance by finishing with 20 kills and 17 digs, Blasco had 35 assists, and Ruggiero led her team with 20 digs. For Middlebury, rookie Lauren Barrett racked up 25 assists, junior tri-captain Olivia Minkhorst had 17 digs, senior Lindsay Patterson totaled nine kills, and senior co-captain Lexie Fisher chipped in with nine kills and three blocks.