HOBOKEN, N.J. – The Haverford College volleyball team was defeated 3-1 by host Stevens, a squad receiving votes in the latest AVCA National Coaches Poll, on the first day of the Stevens Invitational tournament. The Fords were bested by set scores of 25-19, 22-25, 23-25, and 15-25 at the Canavan Arena. Haverford falls to 7-14 on the season while the Ducks improve to 19-4 overall following the home win in an excursion from conference play.
Senior co-captain Natalie Pisch moved to within three kills of 1,000 for her career, finishing with nine on the evening to pull her total to 997. Pisch passed Nina Mullenhard '06 for 10th place all-time in program history with her fifth kill of the match early in the second set and will look to eclipse the 1,000 kill plateau tomorrow afternoon.
Dina Kosyagin was a standout with a career-best 18 kills and a career-best .244 attacking percentage. Sara Hunsberger notched 36 assists while Sara Matsumura led three Fords with double-digit digs, grabbing 22. The leading blocker in the Centennial Conference, Julia Gallagher-Teske, extended her lead in the category with six more blocks added to her ledger on Friday.
In the first set, Haverford had all the momentum working in its favor, hitting .278 in the stanza. Haverford turned a tie at 9-9 into a 17-13 lead before Stevens battled back to trail by just two at 20-18 following a Fords service error. A 4-0 run to end the set included Gallagher-Teske teaming up with Kosyagin and Hunsberger for blocks before a Kosyagin kill ended the set in favor of the Fords.
In the second set, the Fords proved their staying power in the match, holding close with the Ducks and eventually tying the score at 18-18. A trio of Haverford errors gave a 21-18 lead to Stevens, but a pair of kills from Gallagher-Teske kept the Fords alive. Ultimately, a Sara Hain kill gave Stevens the set at 25-22, tying things up at a set apiece.
Another close set was on tap for the third, with Haverford taking a 17-14 lead before Stevens regrouped to capture a 22-21 lead on a block. The Fords went ahead briefly at 23-22 following a block from Gallagher-Teske and Madison Adore, but a pair of errors gave Stevens set point and a block ended the set at 25-23, giving Stevens a 2-1 lead in the match.
Stevens hit .278 in the fourth, matching Haverford's first set output with a strong closing set. Haverford was down just two at 12-10 before a 7-1 Ducks run gave the hosts a 19-11 advantage. The Stevens lead reached 10 at 23-13 and ultimately, a Hain kill was enough to seal victory for Stevens at 25-15.
Stevens did not have a player with double-digit kills but Shelby Stewart and Terence Chan each contributed nine. Kathleen Riegner added 28 assists while Elizabeth Chu had a match-best 30 digs. Stewart's six total blocks matched Gallagher-Teske for the match high in the category.
The Fords will return to the Stevens Invitational on Saturday, facing off with Stockton (2 p.m.) and Scranton (4 p.m.) to wrap up tournament action. Note that match times were pushed back an hour because of the late conclusion to Friday's action.