Volleyball outlasts Rochester in five in UAA play

The Judges celebrate the final point in their win over Rochester (Photo by Andrew Vatistas)
The Judges celebrate the final point in their win over Rochester (Photo by Andrew Vatistas)

WALTHAM, Mass. – The Brandeis University volleyball team closed out the first University Athletic Association round robin of the season with a thrilling five-set win over the University of Rochester today. The Judges fell behind after the first set, 25-12, but rebounded nicely to win the next two, both by scores of 25-13. Rochester bounced back with a 25-18 win in the fourth, but the Judges never trailed in the fifth as they went on to claim the 15-8 victory. Brandeis improves to 3-9 on the season, 1-2 in the UAA, while Rochester falls to 7-9, 0-3 UAA.

"We worked hard for every point today," said head coach Alesia Bennett after the match. "We've battled through some adversity in the early part of this season. I am so proud of how our team worked together to earn the win."

After falling behind in the first set, the Judges turned things up in the second, with 11 kills and just three errors in 30 attacks for a .267 hitting percentage. They were able to keep the Yellowjackets at bay by holding their opponents to a negative percentage in the second and third sets, forcing 18 errors to just 10 kills. After UR bounced back in the fourth, Brandeis took control in the fifth, winning the first three points and never trailing again. The Judges got three kills on four attacks in the fifth set by senior Emma Bartlett (Duxbury, Mass./Duxbury) and 2-for-3 performances by junior Belle Scott (Portland, Ore./Oregon Episcopal School) and rookie Amelia Oppenheimer (The Woodlands, Texas/The Woodlands) as the Judges totaled nine kills and just one error in 16 attacks for a .500 hitting percentage.

Overall, Bartlett led Brandeis with a match- and season-high 17 kills and just three errors in 39 attacks for a .359 percentage, her second-best of the season. She also had 13 digs, one of four Brandeis players to reach double digits, marking her fifth double-double of the season. Scott also notched a double-double, her third of the season, with 10 kills and 14 digs. Junior setter Marissa Borgert (Blaine, Minn./Spring Lake Park) finished with 35 digs and four service aces, including one in the decisive fifth set. Sophomore libero Kaitlyn Oh (Santa Clara, Calif./Cupertino) added a match-high 35 digs. Sophomore Emerson White (Lexington, Ky. / Sayre) led all players with four block assists.

Brandeis returns to action on Friday, September 7, with a 6 p.m. home match against Roger Williams University.