Despite playing some of their best volleyball of the year, the Bears fell to the Hoggers of Northfield Mount Hermon 0-3 this afternoon. The day started well for the Bears as we broke out to a 9-1 lead due to the net play of Samone DeFreese ’16 and solid serving by Katie Stonecipher ’15 and Emily Barclay ’15. At this point, the Hoggers began to regroup, and the team started to contest each point vigorously. With NMH passing and hitting well, the Hoggers slowly fought their way back to even the score at 16-16. Play for the Bears during this stretch was highlighted by that of Samone, setter Elif Kesaf ’14, and hitters Greta Dorsey ’14 and Sassy Cosman-Connery ’14. As the teams exchanged side outs, momentum moved to NMH’s side of the net. As the Bears’ defense faltered, NMH used a scoring run to get ahead 22-18. We cut the lead to two on kills by Livi Oliviel-Robinson ’15 and Katie Stonecipher ’15; however, a kill and two Berkshire passing mistakes enabled NMH to take set one 25-20.
Set two opened with both squads playing good D. Again, Katie served well for the Bears while Samone and Emily patrolled the net. The score was tied 10-10 as the Hoggers served early in the second set rotation. Capitalizing on a spat of Bear mistakes, NMH opened up a 14-10 lead. Although the Bears fought valiantly to close the gap to one point at 15-16, NMH used two short scoring runs to lead 19-15 and 23-17. The squad refused to give in and fought back to trail 21-23 and 22-24. NMH finally took set two 25-22 on a setter dump.
The Bears played catch up with NMH to start the final set and led 3-2 and 4-3. We also tied the score at 6-6, but the Hoggers, whose attack was now working well, opened up an 11-6 advantage. At this juncture, our composure and confidence faltered as NMH extended their lead 15-8. Following an exchange of side outs, another run by NMH made the score 22-10, and the Hoggers soon closed out the set, and the match, with a 25-12 win.
Although dejected by the loss, the Bears learned a great deal about themselves today. When focused and playing together, we can play effectively. In addition, we have room for improvement.
We will now regroup and prepare for our next match. Moose went to TEAM today because we certainly played as a team. For the second consecutive match, Bear went to co-captain Elif Kesaf, our center of calm today. On Saturday, October 5 (SAT Saturday) the Bears take to the scenic highways of the Berkshires to play the Wildcats of The Williston Northampton School at 3:15. We thank our fans for their support and SIBs for web-streaming the match. We especially thank Mr. Wil Smith and Mrs. Nina Bjurlin for serving as commentators.