WELLESLEY, Mass (taken from a Wellesley College press release) -- Wellesley volleyball used solid floor defense and high-percentage hitting to sweep Brandeis University on Wednesday night at Keohane Sports Center. The Blue out-dug the visitors 47-14, while Wellesley's top three attackers hit a combined .500 in the win. The sweep lifts Wellesley to 3-1 on the season. The Judges drop to 2-2.
The hosts jumped to a 5-0 lead in set one, with efficient serving from Isabel Custodio. Brandeis replied with a three-point series of their own, but the Blue used two more runs to push the lead to 17-8 before cruising to a 25-14 win.
Set two was a tighter affair, as neither team gained an advantage in the opening rallies. Wellesley grabbed some breathing room at the midway point, taking a 15-12 lead, then held off a late charge from Brandeis for a 25-21 victory.
Game three followed a similar script, as the teams traded sideouts until the Blue broke away with a three-point service run from Vivian Hu for a 16-12 lead. The Judges responded with a three-point run of their own from junior MB Becca Fischer (San Antonio, Texas/Clark), but Wellesley sealed the match with a 9-2 spurt for a 25-17 win.
For the Judges, rookie outside hitter Liz Hood (Albuquerque, N.M./Albuquerque Acad.) led the team with seven kills. Sophomore setter Yael Einhorn (Mount Laurel, N.J./Cherry Hill East) had four kills and no errors in seven attempts and added 14 assists. Hood and classmate Elsie Bernaiche (Plantsville, Conn./Southington) had four digs each, while Fischer and sophomore Si-Si Hensley (Fullerton, Calif./Troy) both had three blocks (one solo).
For Wellesley, Sydney Carfagno tallied ten kills, while Amanda Duritsch and Custodio added eight a piece. Traci Hamanaka led a tenacious Wellesley defense with nine digs, as Hilary Ayers and Hu combined for 15 more. Hu and Custodio shared setting duties, amassing 34 assists in the win.
This weekend Wellesley travels to Waltham for the Brandeis Invitational. Both teams open at 4pm on Friday, when the hosts face Babson and the Blue square off against Eastern Connecticut State.