ATLANTA, Ga. -- On the second day of action at the University Athletic Association round robin, the Brandeis volleyball team improved upon its day one performance. The Judges opened with a 3-1 win over Rochester to even their conference mark at 1-1, then took the first set from 19th-ranked Chicago before dropping a 3-1 decision. Coach Michelle Kim's squad will return to Waltham with a 10-7 overall record, 1-2 in the Association.
The Judges opened the second day of play against Rochester. Brandeis blitzed the Yellowjackets in the first set, 25-15, but UR bounced back with a 25-19 result in the second. The Judges closed out the match, however, with close wins in the third and fourth, 25-20 and 25-21.
Leading the way with her seventh double-double of the season was senior outside hitter Paige Blasco (Greeley, Colo./Frontier Acad.), who notched 20 kills, a .207 hitting percentage, and a season-high 25 digs. The Judges as a whole had a fine defensive showing, with 84 digs, five shy of their season-best. Also reaching double figures were sophomore outside hitter/defensive specialist Susan Sun (Acton, Mass./Acton-Boxborough) with 19, rookie outside hitter Si-Si Hensley (Fullerton, Calif./Troy) with 17 and senior setter Abby Blasco (Greeley, Colo./Frontier Acad.) with 15. Abby joined her twin sister with a double-double thanks to 39 assists and came up one block shy of a triple-double with nine block assists. Senior middle blocker Nicole Smith (Marietta, Ga./Alan C. Pope), playing in front of a home-town crowd, had 14 kills and just two errors in 22 attempts for a .545 hitting percentage. Smith also added eight block assists.
Against Chicago, the Judges kept up their momentum in the opening set, taking a 25-21 victory. The Maroons bounced back quickly, however, winning the second set by the same score. UC eventually completed the win with 25-16, 25-19 victories in the third and fourth sets.
Paige Blasco led the offense with 14 kills and had 11 digs for her second double-double of the tournament and eighth of the season. She also added three service aces. Abby Blasco and Smith both had nine kills apiece. Abby added 26 assists and nine digs, while Hensley led the team with 12 digs.