SPRINGFIELD, Mass. – The Brandeis University volleyball team won their first set on the second day of action at the 2019 Springfield Invitational, but the Judges were denied the rest of the way, suffering a 3-1 loss to Keene State (20-25, 25-19, 25-22, 25-18) and 3-0 defeat at the hands of the host Springfield College Pride (25-23, 25-11, 25-20).
Against Keene State, Brandeis and the Owls were tied at 11-all when the Judges went on a 7-4 run and never trailed again en route to the 25-20 win. KSC scored the first four points of the second set and even though the Judges managed to grab a 12-11 lead at one point, Keene answered with a 9-4 run and took a 25-19 decision. Brandeis led the third set, 12-9, but six in a row for the Owls helped them establish the lead, as they went on to win, 25-22. The biggest run of the match came in the fourth set, as Keene State won nine points in a row, including three aces by Olivia Mathieu and three kills by Ali McDermott, to turn a 12-12 tie into a 21-12 lead and an eventual 25-18 win.
Brandeis senior All-American Emma Bartlett (Duxbury, Mass./Duxbury) led the way for Brandeis with a match-high 16 kills. She also had just four errors in 34 attacks for a .353 hitting percentage. Bartlett registered her first double-double of the season with 13 digs, tied for team-high honors with junior setter Marissa Borgert (Blaine, Minn./Spring Lake Park). Borgert also had a double-double, adding 37 assists to her 13 digs. Sophomore middle hitter Kaisa Newberg (Reno, Nev./Sage Ridge School) had seven kills and no errors in 14 attempts for a .500 hitting percentage, and also added a team-high five block assists. Rookie outside hitter Amelia Oppenheimer (The Woodlands, Texas / The Woodlands) just missed her first collegiate double-double with nine kills and 12 digs.
Against Springfield, the host Pride used outstanding hitting and defense, as they out-hit Brandeis, .323 to .058, and notched 11 blocks to just five for the Judges. SC also had 49 digs to the Judges' 36. Springfield won 25-23, 25-11, 25-20, posting a terrific .522 hitting percentage (14 kills, 2 errors, 23 assists) in their second-set win.
Individually, Brandeis was led by Newberg and junior middle hitter Belle Scott (Portland, Ore. / Oregon Episcopal School), who each had seven kills. Bartlett and Borgert each had eight digs, with Bartlett adding five blocks (one solo), and Borgert contributing 18 assists and three service aces.
Belle Scott was named to the All-Tournament team.
The Judges return to action next weekend at the Connecticut College Invitational, taking on DeSales, Johnson & Wales and host Camels.