Volleyball Tournament Preview: #5 Mammoths Open vs Hamilton

Volleyball Tournament Preview: #5 Mammoths Open vs Hamilton

MEDFORD, Mass. – After finishing the season by winning five of their last six games, the Amherst College volleyball team will enter the New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) tournament as the #5 seed and will play their quarterfinal match at 8:00 pm on Friday against Hamilton College at Tufts University.

Top-seeded Tufts will host the entire weekend event, with the semifinals being played on Saturday and the championship game Sunday afternoon.

Live Coverage

There will be live stats provided throughout the tournament, and NSN will provide live video streaming for all games during the weekend. Video can be accessed here: https://www.nsnsports.net/

Setting the Scene

Amherst (16-9, 5-5 NESCAC) found themselves in a three-way tie in the conference standings with Middlebury and Williams, and earned the number five seed by virtue of a better set record against the Panthers and Ephs.

Making their 19th straight appearance in the NESCAC postseason field, Amherst has a 24-15 tournament record, second in wins and win percentage (.615) only to Williams. In six trips to the NESCAC championship game, Amherst has three titles, most recently in 2006.

This will be the first postseason meeting between Amherst and Hamilton, who is in just their fourth ever postseason tournament and first since 2014. The Continentals (14-8, 7-3 NESCAC) have earned the highest seed in program history, and have won five straight NESCAC matches heading into Friday night.

 Hamilton pulled out 3-2 victory over the Mammoths in the regular season meeting on October 13th.

Scouting Amherst College

  • Amherst leads the NESCAC in both kills (1162) and assists (1110), and is second in the league with 1646 digs.
  • Emily Kolsky '20 leads the Mammoths and is second in the NESCAC with 288 kills, good for just over three kills per set.
  • Daria Kim-Percy '21 is also in the top ten with 2.84 kills per set, while Marialexa Natsis '18 sits in sixth on 261 total kills.
  • Charlotte Duran '20 has run the offense for most of the year, and with 814 assists, ranks third in the conference.
  • Defensively, Hayes Honea '19 ranks fourth in the conference with 447 total digs. Honea also has 24 service aces, while Asha Walker '18 leads the team with 26 aces on the year.



No. 1 Seed Tufts University (20-5, 10-0 NESCAC) – Schedule/Roster/Stats

Amherst started quickly and took a 1-0 lead, then came back from a game down to force a fifth set, but the Jumbos escaped with a 3-2 (15-25, 25-21, 25-20, 21-25, 15-8) victory on October 6th at LeFrak Gymnasium.   

No. 2 Seed Wesleyan (18-5, 8-2 NESCAC) – Schedule/Roster/Stats
The Cardinals were too much for Amherst on September 30th at Silloway Gym, handing the Mammoths a straight set loss (25-15, 25-16, 25-14) and keeping them in the teens in all three games. 

No. 3 Seed Bowdoin College (14-9, 8-2 NESCAC) – Schedule/Roster/Stats
The day after a tough loss to the Jumbos, Amherst suffered another heartbreaking defeat at home. They led 1-0 and 2-1 over the Polar Bears, but Bowdoin took the fourth game and then fought off Amherst's match point (14-12) to take the decisive game five 17-15. 

No. 6 Seed Middlebury College (16-8, 5-5 NESCAC) – Schedule/Roster/Stats
In the first conference game of the year, Middlebury came to LeFrak Gymnasium on September 15th and stole a 3-2 victory (22-25, 25-22, 23-25, 25-22, 16-14) in undoubtedly one of the most tightly contested matches of the year.

No. 7 Seed Williams College (11-11, 5-5 NESCAC) – Schedule/Roster/Stats
Amherst stopped a four-game skid with a 3-1 victory over The Ephs on October 14th at Chandler Gym. The Mammoths took the opening two sets (25-20, 25-21) and then sealed the win with a 25-17 win in the fourth after the Ephs had cut the deficit in half (25-20).

No. 8 Seed Bates College (12-13, 4-6 NESCAC) – Schedule/Roster/Stats
Amherst celebrated Senior Night on October 27th with a 3-0 sweep of Bates (25-22, 25-18, 25-22) at LeFrak Gymnasium.


All Games at Tufts University

Quarterfinals - Friday, November 3

No. 8 Bates at No. 1 Tufts - 5 p.m.
No. 7 Williams vs. No. 2 Wesleyan - 5 p.m.
No. 6 Middlebury vs. No. 3 Bowdoin - 8 p.m.
No. 5 Amherst vs. No. 4 Hamilton - 8 p.m.

Semifinals - Saturday, November 4

Winner of 1/8 vs. Winner of 4/5 - 1 p.m.
Winner of 2/7 vs. Winner of 3/6 - 3:30 p.m.

Championship - Sunday, November 5

Semifinal Winners - Noon