Bowdoin Women's Volleyball split its final weekend of regular season play with a dramatic 3-0 sweep of Amherst followed by a disappointing 3-1 loss to Trinity.

Saturday's defeat came as a surprise to the Polar Bears. Bowdoin and Trinity had been equally ranked in sixth place for NESCAC going into the weekend, but Trinity's Friday win over first-place Tufts established it as a new, greater threat.

After letting the first set go at 23-25, the Polar Bears came back to notch the second at a tight 24-26. However, in the third and fourth sets the Bears could not regain the lead and closed with final, respective scores of 23-25 and 19-25.

Co-Captains Jenna Diggs '10 and Gillian Page '10 were essential against Trinity; Diggs posted 20 assists alongside a further 20 digs, while Page added 12 kills and 12 digs. Kristin Hanczor '12 was also effective with her seven kills and six block assists.

Diggs blamed both an underestimation of Trinity and a lack of team vigor for its defeat.

"I think we were so elated from our win over Amherst the night before, we looked past Trinity," she said. "We returned to our old routine of simply playing not to lose, and it really hurt us."

The win over Amherst, however, is promising for Bowdoin's performance in the final NESCAC tournament.

In their four years of Bowdoin volleyball, the team's seniors had not once beaten the Lord Jeffs. Last Friday's sweep was therefore one of both great importance and great inspiration.

"I could see the fire in everyone's eyes as we stepped off the bus and entered the gym. That fire permeated the duration of the match, and we not only beat them, we crushed them...destroyed them," Diggs recounted. "My dad was so proud that at the end of the game, he was crying."

After taking an early lead of 10-3 in the opening set, the Polar Bears refused to relent. After closing the first set at 25-23, the Bears allowed fewer and fewer points past them. A second set of 25-22 led into a third and final set in which the Bears sealed the game with a definitive 25-15 triumph.

In this third set, the Polar Bears collectively posted 15 kills out of just 31 total attacks. Across the match, they together totaled an impressive 22 blocks, including seven from Hanczor and five from Kelsey Howe '10. Page led on offense with 11 kills, while Stephanie Drumright '11 and Howe come in a close second and third with a respective eight and seven kills.

The attacks built off of solid performances by both Diggs, at 17 assists, and Stephanie Bond '13 at 14 assists. Defensively, Jillian Berkman '12 added 21 digs to Page's 14.

"Against Amherst, we played with such heart, fire, and passion and completely came together as a team. It was some of the best volleyball we have played all year," Hanczor said.

Bowdoin has the chance to continue proving itself with tonight's opening match of the final NESCAC Tournament, where as the sixth seed they face another Amherst-level opponent in Williams.

Similar to Amherst, the senior Polar Bears have never successfully taken the Ephs. But according to Gina Lonati '12, they stand a good chance at doing so tonight.

"Skill for skill, we are matched pretty evenly with Williams," she said. "It is going to come down to who wants it more and who's willing to push even harder than regular-season play."

"Physically and mentally, we are exactly where we need to be going into this playoff season," Page said. "This is absolutely the most talented team that I have played with in my four years at Bowdoin."