The women’s volleyball team returned home last weekend from the Emory Classic with a broken streak—but also with a few more wins. The team won three of its four games, but was handed its first loss this season by No. 4 Emory in the final.

The tournament gave the Polar Bears their first glimpse of the country’s top-ranked teams. Despite the loss to Emory, the team was not discouraged. 

“[The girls] gained a lot of confidence—they maintained their composure and they really fought hard out there,” said Head Coach Karen Corey. “It really showed that we can play point for point with any team in the country.”

Earlier in the tournament, the team beat Birmingham-Southern College and Transylvania University, winning both matches in four sets. The team then beat No. 21 Wisconsin-Whitewater in a hard-fought five sets. The team’s final matchup against Emory ended in four tight sets.

“I’m not at all alarmed by the loss but rather really encouraged because these [mistakes] are simple things to fix and we’ll be in a great place,” said Corey. “Our trip to Emory was a chance for us to play some of the stronger teams in the country.”

The team has reason to celebrate more than just its wins this week. For the second week in a row, one of the team’s players, captain Christy Jewett ’16, was nominated for NESCAC Player of the Week.

“She had a great performance at Emory,” Corey said. “Not only is she getting kills for us, but her passing has been really strong and that keeps our team in a very comfortable place on the court.”

In the past week, Jewett averaged 3.45 kills per set and tallied 10 service aces and 11 blocks.
While Jewett stole the spotlight this past week, the entire team performed well, largely due to its new system. Instead of having the traditional three players stay on the court for offensive and defensive situations, their new system uses four players.

“The new system allows the players to use their strong passing and defense,” said Corey. “They have offensive strengths too that we want to capitalize on.”

Corey emphasized that the team does not have one powerhouse player, but rather a solid group of balanced teammates that complement one another.

The team begins its NESCAC schedule this weekend when it hosts Connecticut College and Tufts in Morrel gymnasium today and tomorrow, respectively.