CAMBRIDGE, Mass.—The Babson College women's volleyball suffered a pair of losses on the final day of the New England Challenge inside Rockwell Cage on Saturday afternoon. The Beavers were beaten in four sets (25-17, 23-25, 27-25, 25-11) by Tufts University in the opening match of the day before dropping a three-set decision (30-28, 25-21, 25-19) to Williams College.
Babson, which debuted at fourth in the initial NCAA regional rankings on Wednesday, slips to 18-8 on the year. Tufts won all three of its matches over the weekend to improve to 14-8, while Williams is now 12-10 overall.
Tufts 3, Babson 1
Sophomore Allie Puccio (New Hartford, N.Y.) tied for match-high honors with 15 kills to go along with three blocks and junior Elizabeth Cameron (El Dorado Hills, Calif.) finished with 25 assists, eight digs and five kills in the Beavers' four-set loss to the Jumbos. Senior Abby Beecher (Pittsford, N.Y.) registered a team-high 18 digs, while junior Kristin Carosotto (East Greenwich, R.I.) and sophomore Sabrina Lechner (Novato, Calif) added four and three blocks, respectively.
First-year Cate Desler (Hillsborough, Calif.) and senior Mackenzie Bright (Duxbury, Mass.) both finished with 15 kills, sophomore Sophia Acker (La Jolla, Calif.) contributed 21 digs and the duo of junior Rachel Furash (Westlake Village, Calif.) and first-year Ariel Zedric (Peoria, Ill.) combined to dish out 48 assists for Tufts.
After hitting .406 in the opening stanza, the Jumbos were up 22-17 in the second before Babson rattled off eight of the next nine points to even the match. Back-to-back kills by seniors Shannon Roseen (Malden, Mass.) and Catherine Hunter (Duxbury, Mass.) trimmed the deficit to 23-21, Cameron followed with an ace and Roseen put away another kill to make it 23-23. Cameron then served up consecutive aces to cap the rally for a 25-23 victory.
The Green and White trailed by as many as three early in the third before using a 12-4 run to take a 20-15 advantage thanks to back-to-back kills by Lechner and Hunter. Tufts followed with five straight points, four coming on the serve of junior Heather Holz (Palatine, Ill.), but Babson regained a 23-21 lead on a kill by Carosotto. The Jumbos staved off a set point to pull even at 24-24 and followed up a Beavers' kill by Puccio with consecutive kills from junior Maddie Stewart (Menlo Park, Calif.) and Bright to take a 2-1 edge in the match.
The fourth was dominated by Tufts, which put away 12 kills and served up seven aces on the way to closing out the match.
Williams 3, Babson 0
Puccio finished with nine kills, Roseen added seven and Cameron contributed 17 assists, six kills, five digs and two blocks for the Green and White. Carosotto added five kills and three blocks, while Beecher and sophomore Cassidy Witten (Honolulu, Hawaii) registered nine and eight digs, respectively.
Senior Roxi Corbeil (Oceanside, Calif.) led the Ephs with 12 kills and 11 assists, junior Erin Denham (Winnetka, Ill.) recorded 10 kills and first-year Olivia Hindy (Summit, N.J.) recorded seven digs and three blocks. Senior Alex Newton (Manhattan Beach, Calif.) led all players with 20 assists and junior Daiana Takashima (Walnut Creek, Calif.) finished with a match-high 11 digs in the victory.
Babson trailed for nearly all of a marathon first set before erasing a 23-20 deficit to go in front 25-24 on a kill by Carosotto. Williams, which had 19 kills in the opening stanza, fought off set point thanks to a kill by Denham, and then got back-to-back kills from Corbeil with the game tied at 28 to go in front 1-0.
The Green and White led by as many as five early in the second only to watch the Ephs go on a 16-7 run that put them in front 19-15. Babson answered with kills by Roseen and Lechner to pull even at 20, but Denham, Newton, Corbeil and Hindy all came through with kills to close out a 25-21 victory.
Williams used a 12-1 spurt to build an 11-point lead before the Beavers answered with seven consecutive points, which included three aces, on Beecher's serve to cut their deficit to 18-15. Babson later got within 22-19 on an ace by sophomore Gaby Miller (Miami, Fla.), but the Ephs took advantage of two late errors and a Tess Richman (Northridge, Calif.) ace on match point to close out the win.
Babson returns to action on Tuesday with a pivotal league match at Wellesley at 7 p.m.
• The Beavers are now 1-18 all-time against Tufts and 1-6 in program history against Williams.
• Puccio was named to the all-tournament team after averaging 3.20 kills per set and hitting .219 in three matches over the weekend.
• Babson is now 17-4 against Division III competition this season with three of the losses coming inside Rockwell Cage. The Green and White had previously dropped a four-set match at MIT in early October.