Event Recap:(25-22; 14-25; 22-25; 25-19; 12-15)
The Bears concluded the 2012 campaign with an intense and see-saw battle against the Titans of Wilbraham and Monson Academy. Momentum was the key word for the day. In set one, the Titans jumped out to an 18-10 lead via good serving and timely hits. Not having played in two weeks, the Bears took some time to find a rhythm. The impetus for our surge in the set came from setter Elif Kesaf ’14, who strung together eight quality serves that helped propel Berkshire to a 19-18 advantage. Samone DeFreese ’15 (a kill and a block) and Krissy Goversten ’15 (a kill) added offense at the net. After the Titans had retaken the lead at 22-19, all-star Katie Stonecipher ’15 provided two service points and fellow all-star Caitlin Kiene ’13 supplied two kills to bring the Bears to set point. After two Titans points, the Bears took set one 25-22.
Momentum in set two, however, had switched to the Titans, who again broke in front to take a 14-6 lead through the first service rotation. The Bears were unable to rebound this time as the Titans maintained their lead to take the set 25-14. We eventually stretched our advantage to eight points at 19-11. At this point, fickle momentum again crossed to the other side of the net as the Titans used a seven-point scoring run to trail by one point. The Bears then fell behind 20-22 but used a kill by Caitlin and an ace from Krissy to tie the score at 22-22. Alas, the Titans completed their comeback with three consecutive points to take set three 25-22.
Set four belonged to the Bears, who led 18-11 at the start of the second service rotation. We built this lead behind the service of Katie, Samone (2 aces), Caitlin (2 aces), and setter Nicole Martinez ’16 as well as great hits by Caitlin (2 kills), Em (3 kills), Nicole, and Sydney Beldock ’14. This time the Bears did not falter as Samone patrolled the net and Caitlin, Maddy Maher ’13, and Katie furnished kills to propel Berkshire to a 25-19 win.
In the final set, Caitlin’s kill and three Titan errors allowed the Bears to go in front 4-2. With the score 6-6, a tip by Nicole and a service point by Krissy moved the Bears back ahead 8-6. At this point, a four-point run put the Titans in the lead at 10-8; however, two points by Berkshire, including an ace from Elif, once again tied the score at 10-10. Two Bear errors put the Titans back in front at 12-10. A kill by Samone made it 12-11! The Titans gained another point on a Bear hitting error to go up 13-11. At this point, the Berkshire bench thought a hit by Caitlin had made the score 13-12; however, the official saw the hit as out. Trailing 14-11, Caitlin put down another ball to make it 14-12; however, a Titan kill secured a 15-12 win for Wilbraham in the set and a 3-2 victory in the match.
At the end of the last match, Livi Oliviel-Robinson ’15, chief representative of team spirit during the match, garnered Moose. Bear went to Elif Kesaf, who played an all-around good match and served as a point of calm in the maelstrom of action on the court.
The 2012 season was one of sweat, pain, and disappointment. However, it was also a season of emotional growth, skill development, and beautiful play against some of our toughest opponents. We played some of our best volleyball in defeats. We thank our four seniors (Eliza Berg, Caitlin Kiene, Maddy Maher, and Katie Moffett) for their toil, their tears, and their good cheer. They have helped to establish a base from which the Bears can build in 2013. We will miss them and wish them success as their time under the shadow of the Dome draws to an end.