In an event in which many teams were surprised that UR even showed up, the Yellowjackets left New York City in the upper echelon of New York State’s Division III Volleyball teams. UR entered the New York State Tournament as the 11th seed, and shocked sixth seed Union College, before giving third seed and nationally ranked Ithaca College two tough sets and narrowly losing to SUNY Geneseo in the fifth place game.
If anyone expected a sweep in the first round match-up between Union and the Yellowjackets, chances were that they thought that the favored Dutchwomen would wind up on top. UR pulled off the upset of the tournament, when they defeated Union in three surprisingly easy sets. The final score was 30-27, 30-13, 33-31.
“We played really well. The other teams did not expect us to be there, and we were clicking on all cylinders ? especially against Union,” sophomore Kristin Vogt said. Sophomore captain, Liz Loveless, provided her usual prowess in the center with 31 assists and eight digs. Freshman Blair Nonaka added 14 kills, and seven digs. Vogt also contributed seven kills, and four digs.
UR carried the momentum of its upset victory into the first two sets of its quarterfinal match against Ithaca. The Yellowjackets gave the Bombers a good scare, before Ithaca pulled away against a tired UR team, in a four set triumph. UR was defeated 33-31, 29-31, 22-30, 20-30. Freshman Haley Massa led the team with 11 kills, while Vogt chipped in with 10, and Loveless had 38 assists. The mere fact that the Yellowjackets could give a team of national prominence two tough sets shows the strides that UR has made over the course of the year.
In the finale, UR was nipped by Geneseo in five sets. The Yellowjackets were defeated 25-30, 30-15, 22-30, 32-30, 15-12. Overall, though UR had nothing to be ashamed of, concerning its effort over the weekend. This weekend, UR concludes its season at the UAA tournament at Case Western University in Cleveland. The eighth seeded Yellowjackets will face fifth seeded Brandeis, and will be looking for revenge from a defeat earlier in the year. “I’m excited to play Brandeis again, with the way we’re playing now, we should definitely win,” sophomore Grace Kraay said. Vogt added similar sentiments. “We have to decide whether the team that played Union will show up, or if we will be the team that played Brandeis the first time,” Vogt said. “If we play like we did against Union we will win.”
UR will also have the privilege of facing the Bears of Washington University in St. Louis, the undefeated, number one team in the nation . “It’s an honor just to be on the court with them,” freshman Katie Czerniak said. “I’d be impressed just to win 20 points in the entire match.” UR closes group play against fourth seeded NYU.