Volleyball Bests John Carroll, Falls to No. 10 Mary Washington

Natalie Pisch - Photo Courtesy of David Sinclair Photography
Natalie Pisch - Photo Courtesy of David Sinclair Photography

HAVERFORD, Pa. – On the second day of Haverford Invitational action, the Fords again split the day, taking a 3-1 victory over John Carroll before falling 3-0 to No. 10 Mary Washington. Natalie Pisch set a new career high with 21 kills in the first match against the Blue Streaks. Haverford sits at 2-2 on the young season after the split.

Haverford 3, John Carroll 1 (25-20, 27-29, 25-21, 25-17)

In the first-ever meeting between the two schools, Haverford got the best of the Blue Streaks in four sets. The Fords set the tone with a dominating first set, using a .387 to -.065 advantage in hitting percentage to power past the visitors with a 20-8 run to open play.

Undaunted, John Carroll was able to rally to take the second set after a 5-0 run that included two service aces from Shannon Atwell. The run extended to 8-2 to open the set and the Fords were forced to play catch up. A 5-0 run briefly gave the Fords a late lead at 23-22 and the two teams eventually swapped set point until the Blue Streaks were able to take advantage of a pair of Haverford errors to prevail 29-27 in the set.

Set three saw a rejuvenated Fords squad again hanging tight with a resilient John Carroll team. John Carroll took a 12-9 lead after an Atwell kill but the Fords rallied to take a 15-13 lead as Julia Gallagher-Teske punched down a pair of attacks for kills ahead of a four point swing that saw Claire Nicholas earn a kill before Pisch and Gallagher-Teske combined on a block. Gallagher-Teske and Sydney Miller continued the block party for a 20-17 lead that forced a Blue Streaks timeout. Two consecutive John Carroll errors put the Fords up 23-19 and Nicholas notched a service ace to give Haverford set point. Pisch took a pass from Zoe Wong and delivered the set to Haverford with a deciding kill.

The Fords opened the fourth set on fire offensively, hitting a match-best .436 to pull away in a cohesive style reminiscent of the first set victory. With Wong serving, Pisch, Madison Adore, and Nicholas combined for five straight kills prompting a timeout with Haverford leading 11-5. The Fords called for time as John Carroll climbed closer into the contest at 13-11 with back-to-back strikes from Julianne McGervey. The Blue Streaks trailed by just two at 17-15 before Haverford rattled off three straight points to prompt a final timeout. Leading 20-15 at the stoppage, the Fords scored five of the final seven points including three straight to seal victory.

The Fords hit .269 on the match, holding John Carroll to .131.  Aside from the career day from Pisch, Nicholas had 18 kills in just her third collegiate match and Gallagher-Teske also set a career best with 10 kills on 27 swings. Zoe Wong had 49 assists while Pisch and Gallagher-Teske each had 4 blocks. Pisch, Nicholas and Sara Matsumura each had two service aces. McGervey had 14 kills to pace John Carroll while Atwell pitched in 34 assists in a losing effort. Thommie Jackson chipped in three blocks.

#10 Mary Washington 3, Haverford 0 (25-14, 25-22, 25-17)

In the second match, Haverford struggled for consistency early against No. 10 Mary Washington. The visiting Eagles jumped out to an 18-10 lead and were able to push the lead to 21-12 before an eventual 25-14 victory using a .385 hitting percentage.

In the second set, the Fords pushed Mary Washington, keeping the match close throughout. A block from Adore and Pisch cut the lead to just 17-16 and appeared briefly to swing the momentum in favor of Haverford. Adore followed up the block with a kill and the Fords benefited from an attack error to tie the set at 19-19. Mary Washington stretched the lead back to 23-20 with Peyton Dunow anchoring the offense with Savannah Powers at the service line. The Fords made it a two-point game as Wong was able to find ground with a finesse shot from the setter position but a blocking error gave set point to the Eagles, who were able to convert for a 25-22 set victory.

A 7-3 run to open the third set helped propel Mary Washington to victory as they began to eye a perfect weekend at 22-11, prompting a Haverford timeout. Led by Pisch, who contributed three kills down the stretch, Haverford climbed to within nine at 23-14 before staving off three straight match points. A service error ended the match in favor of the visitors.

Pisch had nine kills in the second match of the day while Nicholas contributed eight. Wong contributed 21 assists while Gallagher-Teske had four blocks. Miller tallied two service aces. Dunow led the way for Mary Washington with 11 kills while Wren Berry accumulated 34 assists. Three Eagles had two blocks each in a well-rounded effort.

Wong was named to the Haverford Invitational All-Tournament team following the conclusion of matches.

Haverford will have a quick turnaround, with a matchup on Wednesday night in Gooding '84 Arena against Elizabethtown. The Fords are 9-6 all-time against the Blue Jays, including four straight wins and a 5-0 home mark. First serve is slated for 5 p.m.