Hartford, Conn. - The Trinity College volleyball team fell to the Bowdoin College Polar Bears in straight sets (25-19, 25-20, 25-19) on Friday night in New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) action. The Bantams fall to 4-7 overall with the loss while Bowdoin improves to 7-4 on the year and picks up their first win in conference play. Trinity returns to action tomorrow at 1 p.m. for a matchup at home against the Jumbos of Tufts University.
Sophomore Rachel Underwood (Danville, Calif.) led Trinity offensively with 11 kills on 24 attacks while junior Claudia Varner (Port Washington, N.Y.) had a team-high .385 hitting percentage. Senior tri-captain Randi Whitham (Weymouth, Mass.) led the squad with 29 assists just one game after surpassing 1,000 for her career. For the Polar Bears, Michelle Albright (Los Altos, Calif.) and Caroline Flaharty (Fort Myers, Fla.) had nine kills each to lead the team, followed by Erika Sklaver (Miami Beach, Fla.) who chipped in eight kills of her own.
Both teams traded points in a back-and-forth first set that came down to the wire. Bowdoin took a 20-18 lead late in the set which caused a Trinity timeout as the Bantams tried to halt the Polar Bear momentum. Bowdoin went on a 5-1 run out of the timeout to take the first set, 25-19, and go up 1-0 in the match.
Set two saw the Bantams jump out to a quick 4-1 lead however Bowdoin remained resilient. The Polar Bears tied it at 9-9 and after more back-and-forth, the visitors climbed to a 17-14 advantage. A Varner kill later in the set tied things up at 20 but the Polar Bears rattled off five-straight points to take a 2-0 match lead with the 25-20 set win.
The Bantams started the third set with an early lead once again however Bowdoin did not falter. With the Bantams up, 14-12, Varner ripped a kill to give the hosts a three-point lead, however Bowdoin eventually tied the set at 17-17. First-year Colette Scheffers (Flossmoor, Ill.) ripped an ace to put Trinity back ahead, however Bowdoin finished the set on a 8-2 run and finished the match on a block by Sydney Salle (Chadds Ford, Pa.) to earn the win.