HANOVER, N.H. – After being down by two sets, the Dartmouth volleyball team turned things around to defeat Brown, 3-2 (17-25, 24-26, 25-18, 25-16, 15-12) in Leede Arena on Friday night. With the victory, the Big Green improved to 9-15 overall and 2-11 in Ivy League play, while the Bears dropped to 5-18 and 3-10.
Senior Emily Astarita and sophomore Zoe Leonard ended the night with double-doubles, as Astarita had 18 digs and 11 kills and Leonard recorded 22 assists and 16 digs. Seniors Molly Kornfeind and Kaira Lujan had double-digit kills, while freshman Abby Kott led with her .333 hitting percentage.
“I am proud of our team effort tonight,” head coach Gilad Doron said. “After a slow start and two dropped sets, we could have very easily quit. But, we came together and played three more solid games. It was good to see our seniors stepping up tonight and inspiring the team to fight through. I was glad to see that we got stronger as the match went on, which is how we should plan to play going forward. Now, we have one more game against Yale and I know our players will leave it all on the court.”
Brown got the first two points of the first set, but Dartmouth soon took the lead following a pair of Bear errors, a kill by Astarita and an ace by senior Danielle Glinka (4-2). The Big Green remained ahead until a 6-4 run on the other side of the net tied the score at eight-all and, from there, Brown had control until the end of the set, going on a 17-9 run to take the first win of the night (25-17).
The Big Green started the second set well, getting off to a 6-2 lead after four Brown errors and kills by Glinka and Astarita. Dartmouth got as far as six points ahead (12-6), but the Bears scored six straight points to get back in the game (12-12). Even then, the Big Green maintained a hold on the lead, making it 22-19 soon after. Brown’s five consecutive points made it interesting, stealing the lead and making it set point (24-22). A pair of errors by the visitors tied the score at 24-all, but two Dartmouth errors gave another set to the Bears (26-24).
Although Brown won the first two points of the third, Dartmouth fought hard to take the lead and soon had an 8-4 edge. Even though the Bears got within one or two points a handful of times, the Big Green never relinquished their lead. With a 22-17 edge, Brown got one point closer, but kills by Kott and Lujan sealed the victory for the home team (25-18).
Dartmouth dominated the fourth set, winning the first two points and only getting stronger from there. Brown did get within two points (15-13), but five straight by the Big Green further increased their lead (20-13). The Bears won just three more points throughout the remainder of the set, while kills by Kott, Lujan and senior Molly Kornfeind, as well as two Brown errors all contributed to Dartmouth’s second victory of the night (25-16).
With everything on the line, both teams played hard in the fifth set. The Big Green took a 5-2 lead following kills by Kott, Astarita and Kornfeind, and an error on the other side of the net, but the Bears did not make it easy by coming back to tie the score (5-5). Dartmouth pulled ahead, only to have Brown snatch the lead (11-9). Errors committed by the Bears allowed the Big Green to get within two points of another win (13-11) and, after Brown got closer to make it a one-point set (13-12), a pair of errors by the Bears gave the match to Dartmouth (15-12).
Dartmouth returns to action on Saturday for Senior Day when it hosts Yale at 5 p.m.