AMHERST, Mass. – The Amherst College women's volleyball team earned the third seed in the NESCAC Championship tournament and will take on sixth-seeded Wesleyan University in quarterfinal action at 8 p.m. on Friday, November 4 at Cousens Gymnasium on the campus of top seed and tournament host Tufts University in Medford, Mass.
A live video webcast courtesy of the Northeast Sports Network (NSN) will be available for each quarterfinal match on Friday, as well as the semifinals and championship matches on Saturday and Sunday.
SETTING THE SCENE
Amherst enters NESCAC postseason play as the third seed for the fourth consecutive season, and currently owns a 16-8 overall record and a 7-3 ledger in conference action. Wesleyan takes the court with a 15-7 tally on the season, and finished its league slate with a 6-4 mark en route to earning the sixth seed in the conference tournament.
Amherst is making its 18th straight trip to the NESCAC championship, and boasts a 23-14 record in league postseason matches since 1999. The Purple & White won the conference title in 1999, 2000 and 2006, and will look to advance to the NESCAC championship match for the first time since 2008. Wesleyan is making its 13th appearance in the NESCAC Championship, and first since 2010. The Cardinals currently have a 4-12 overall mark in conference postseason action, and finished as the league runner-up in 2001.
Amherst and Wesleyan met in the regular season finale on Saturday, October 29 at LeFrak Gymnasium, with the Purple & White clinching a thrilling, 3-2 win over the Cardinals that snapped their five-match winning streak. Amherst and Wesleyan have squared off three times in tournament play. The Purple & White earned semifinal wins over the Cardinals in 2006 and 2008 – twice knocking off second-seeded Wesleyan as the third seed that season – and earned a quarterfinal win over its Little III rival in 2010 as the top seed in the championship.
- Amherst enters postseason play led offensively by the senior tandem Maggie Danner and Nicole Gould. Danner lead the team in kills (280), and kills per set (3.26), while Gould has notched 219 kills, averaging 2.64 per frame.
- Directing the offense this season has been the combination of first-year Charlotte Duran and senior Kate Bres. Duran has dished out 395 assists (4.88 per set), while Bres has collected 357 assists with an average of 4.58 helpers per stanza.
- Defensively, Hayes Honea '19 has helped establish Amherst's stellar backline with 451 digs (5.78 per set), while Kelci Keeno '17 follows with 202 digs. The duo has also been impressive from the service line with 23 and 20 aces respectively, while Asha Walker '18 has served up 22 aces.
AMHERST VERSUS THE REST OF THE 2016 TOURNAMENT FIELD
No. 1 Seed Tufts University (22-2, 10-0 NESCAC) – Schedule/Roster/Stats
Amherst fell to Tufts, 3-0 (21-25, 17-25, 27-29) in a tightly contested matchup Saturday, Sept. 17 at Cousens Gym, in Medford, Mass.
No. 2 Seed Middlebury College (15-8, 7-3 NESCAC) – Schedule/Roster/Stats
Amherst fell to Middlebury, 3-1 (25-15, 21-25, 25-19, 25-16) on Friday, Oct. 14 at Pepin Gymnasium in Middlebury, Vt.
No. 4 Seed Bowdoin College (14-9, 6-4 NESCAC) – Schedule/Roster/Stats
Amherst opened NESCAC play with a 3-1 win (25-16, 23-25, 25-18, 25-19) over Bowdoin on Friday, Sept. 16 at Morrell Gymnasium.
No. 5 Seed Williams College (13-10, 6-4 NESCAC) – Schedule/Roster/Stats
Amherst clinched a thrilling, 3-2 (18-25, 25-17, 23-25, 25-10, 15-10) victory over Williams – its first over the Ephs since 2012 – on Friday, Sept. 23 at LeFrak Gymnasium.
No. 6 Seed Wesleyan (15-7, 6-4 NESCAC) – Schedule/Roster/Stats
Amherst battled back from a 2-1 deficit to stake a 3-2 (23-25, 25-18, 18-25, 25-20, 15-8) victory over rival Wesleyan on Oc.t 29 at LeFrak Gymnasium to earn the Little III title.
2016 NESCAC WOMEN'S VOLLEYBALL CHAMPIONSHIP SCHEDULE
Quarterfinals - Friday, November 4 (at Tufts)
No. 8 Conn. College at No. 1 Tufts – 5 p.m.
No. 7 Bates vs. No. 2 Middlebury – 5 p.m.
No. 6 Wesleyan vs. No. 3 Amherst – 8 p.m.
No. 5 Williams vs. No. 4 Bowdoin – 8 p.m.
Semifinals - Saturday, November 5 (at Tufts)
Winner of 4/5 vs. Winner of 1/8 - 1 p.m.
Winner of 3/6 vs. Winner of 2/7 - 3:30 p.m.
Championship - Sunday, November 6 (at Tufts)
Semifinal 2 Winner vs. Semifinal 1 Winner - 12 p.m.