Volleyball falls in season opener at Wellesley, 3-1

WELLESLEY, Mass. (taken from a Wellesley College press release) -- The Brandeis University volleyball team dropped its 2007 season opener tonight, 3-1, at Wellesley College. The Judges lost by game scores of 19-30, 18-30, 30-27, 19-30.

Wellesley jumped out to an early lead in game one, behind tough serving from first-year setter Victoria Peng (Diamond Bar, Calif.) and Lauren Rasmussen (Bonita, Calif.), forcing the Judges to take a timeout at 16-9. But Wellesley's transition offense, anchored by senior Tracy Waldman (Seattle, Wash.) and first-year Madeleine Brumley (Lafeyette, La.) powered the Blue to a 30-19 victory in game one. The second set was more of the same, as the Blue once again took an early lead and coasted to a two-game lead with 30-18 win.

The Judges fought back in game three, using an eight-point run to take a 10-7 lead and a seven-point run to put the game on ice. Brandeis controlled the net throughout game three, as rookie Nicole Smith (Marietta, Ga.) and Abby Blasco (Greely, Colo.) shut down the Wellesley offense with dominant blocking, leading the Judges to a 30-27 win and narrowing the score to 2-1. Game four was a see-saw affair until Wellesley broke away with a four-point run to take a 15-11 lead. The Blue put the match away with aggressive serving and high-percentage offense that committed only three errors in the game, taking the set 30-19.

Brandeis was led at the net by Lorraine Wingenbach (Buffalo, NY) with 13 kills, while Bridget McAllister (Santa Clara, Calif.) added seven. Smith and Blasco tallied six and five blocks each, while Blasco also dished out 32 assists.

Dawdy led the Blue at the net with 13 kills. Brumley and Waldman added eleven and eight, respectively. Junior libero Emily Peters (Temescal Valley, Calif.) led the team with 15 digs, while Dawdy chipped in 13. Peng guided the Wellesley offense with 42 assists.