The volleyball team defeated Tufts on Wednesday night for the first time since the institution of NESCAC play in 2000.

After falling behind 2-0, the Polar Bears rallied to win the next three games and take the match.

The Polar Bears improved their overall season record to 13-7 and won a program-record sixth conference game of the year, bringing their NESCAC record to 6-2.

The Jumbo's record falls to 14-6 overall with their NESCAC ranking standing at 5-3.

In front of the home crowd at Morrel Gymnasium, the Polar Bears lost the first two sets to Tufts 25-16 and 25-19 before rallying with two victories 25-16 and 25-22 to tie everything up and bring the match to a head in the deciding fifth set.

As the fifth set began, the Polar Bears' prospects dimmed with Tufts taking a 13-10 lead, but the team rallied again, winning the next five points to seal the victory.

"It was great to see the team pull together tonight against Tufts," said Melissa Haskell '13.

"Even when we were down in the last set, the players believed we could win, kept putting pressure on Tufts and let them make the mistakes," she said.

Ellie Brennan '13, finishing with 10 kills and two blocks, began the winning rally with a key rejection.

Kristin Hanczor '12 led the team with 12 kills and seven blocks overall.

Stephanie Drumwright '11 had five kills and six blocks, with Sophia Cornew '14 earning 31 assists and 14 digs.

Senior Anna Noucas led the team defensively with 18 digs.

"This was a big win for us, but to be where we want to be at the conference tournament we need to play strong this weekend," Haskell said.

"We have Hamilton Friday night and Williams Saturday; our last two conference games of the year. We've been working hard in practice, and hope to bring that level of play to the rest of our matches this season."

This dramatic win takes on an even greater importance in light of the team's disappointing performance over the break. The Polar Bears lost their first two conference matches last weekend, first 3-1 against Middlebury and a decisive 3-0 by the Amherst Lord Jeffs, both at Middlebury.

The Polar Bears relish the opportunity to finish up conference play in their upcoming matches, taking on the Hamilton Continentals tonight and ending NESCAC play with a match against the Williams Ephs at Tufts tomorrow.