The Crimson forced Dartmouth to a fifth set in its Ivy League opener but came up just short (Gil Talbot).
CAMBRIDGE, Mass. - Kristen Casey, Taylor Docter and Teresa Skelly each recorded double-digit kills as the Harvard women's volleyball team opened Ivy League play Saturday versus Dartmouth. The individual efforts were not enough, however, as the Big Green defeated Harvard 3-2 at the Malkin Athletic Center.
Harvard (7-4, 0-1 Ivy League) pulled to within one point of Dartmouth (9-3, 1-0 Ivy League) in the fifth and deciding set, 10-9, after trailing by as many as four earlier in the frame. The Big Green and Madeline Baird proved to be too much though as Baird scored three kills down the stretch to help Dartmouth to the 15-10 victory.
The Crimson forced a fifth set with a comfortable 25-15 win in the fourth. Skelly recorded four blocks and three kills in the frame as Harvard outhit the Big Green .344 to -.030. With the score tied at eight, Skelly teamed up with Caroline Walters and Casey for back-to-back blocks before notching her second kill for an 11-8 advantage. Harvard would later use a 4-0 run to pull away, with Skelly again registering a pair of blocks.
Dartmouth won both the first and third sets by a combined five points, 25-22 and 26-24. Harvard fought back from a 16-10 deficit in the opening set to take a 19-18 edge before consecutive kills by Elisa Scudder and Alex Schoenberger gave the victory to Dartmouth. The Crimson led by as many as five points, 17-12, in the third but could not hold on to the lead after an 8-1 run by the Big Green.
Despite being outhit in the second set, Harvard was able to take advantage of key mistakes by the Big Green in the waning moments to come away with a 25-23 win. Tied at 22, the Crimson paired a Skelly kill with two Dartmouth errors for the victory.
Casey finished with 17 kills and 14 digs for her third double-double of the year. Beth Kinsella also registered a double-double with 50 assists and 12 digs, her fifth. Docter and Skelly each tallied 14 kills with Skelly also turning in six block assists and Docter three aces. Christine Wu anchored the Crimson defense with 30 digs and moved into fifth place in Ivy League history with her third dig of the day. Wu now has 1,553 digs to her credit.
Dartmouth was led by Baird and Schoenberger who tallied 22 kills and 21 kills, respectively. Baird also turned in a team-best 16 digs.
Harvard will return to action Friday, Sept. 30 at Princeton at 7:00 p.m. The Crimson will play at Penn the following day at 5:00 p.m.