PHILADELPHIA – For Alumni Weekend and the final home matches of the season, the University of Pennsylvania volleyball team will host Dartmouth on Friday at 7 p.m. and Harvard on Saturday at 5 p.m. in The Palestra. Along with celebrating Senior Night on Saturday, the Quakers (7-14, 4-6 Ivy) will be officially unveiling their new locker room as well as honoring the 5th and 25th anniversaries of the 1989 and 2009 Ivy League Championship teams.
Live stats of both the match against Dartmouth and Harvard will be available by clicking here.
The Penn Sports Network will also provide live HD video streaming, which can be seen on the Ivy League Digital Network. Video coverage of the matches can be found by clicking the following links.
Penn vs. Dartmouth
Penn vs. Harvard
Last Time on the Court: Cornell/Columbia
It was an up and down road trip through New York, as Penn suffered a 3-0 (25-16, 25-18, 25-18) loss to Cornell but turned things around the next day for a 3-1 (25-21, 19-25, 25-18, 25-22) win over Columbia.
The last time the Quakers fell in straight sets to the Big Red was back in 2006 when Cornell was crowned the Ivy League Champions. Senior Kendall Turner led the offensive efforts in the loss with eight kills, while junior Alexis Genske and freshman Kendall Covington each had six.
Ready to redeem themselves, the Red and Blue rebounded and went on to defeat the Lions the next day, while recording a season-best hitting percentage of .291. Three Quakers reached double-digit kills, with Genske leading the way with 17 and a .317 hitting percentage. Turner contributed 12 of her own and hit .458, though Turner proved to not only to be an offensive threat; she had a solo block and paired up for seven block assists – a single-match high (8). The third member of the Red and Blue to reach double-digit kills was junior Alex Caldwell, who recorded her fourth triple-double of the season: 10 kills, 26 assists, 14 digs. While three managed to break the double-digit kill plane, freshman Kendall Covington was just one kill shy of being the fourth to reach the mark. She had nine kills in 17 attempts with just one error to lead the Red and Blue with a .471 hitting percentage.
Scouting Dartmouth (13-8, 4-6 Ivy)
Now in a four-match slump, Dartmouth finished last weekend on a low-note following two straight losses to Yale and Brown. Friday’s match against number one ranked Yale proved to be a tough contest for the Big Green, despite maintaining pace with the Bulldogs in the beginning of the first set. Dartmouth fell to Yale in three straight sets, 3-0 (25-17, 25-17, 25-19). Sophomore Emily Astarita led the team with nine kills, while junior Paige Caridi and freshman Sara Lindquist each contributed eight.
The following day, the Big Green hoped to redeem themselves with a win over Brown. Despite a third set win, Dartmouth was overtaken by Brown in the fourth for a second loss on the weekend (25-19, 25-23, 21-25, 25-21). Astarita and Lindquist were once again offensive leaders for the Big Green with 16 and 13 kills, respectively, while Caridi anchored the defense with 25 digs. Astarita also contributed 16 digs of her own.
Scouting Harvard (15-4, 8-2 Ivy)
This past weekend proved to be monumental as the much-anticipated contest between Harvard and Yale resulted in the Crimson’s triumph over the Bulldogs, 3-0 (26-24, 25-22, 25-15). Harvard hadn’t swept a regular season match from Yale since 2002, while the Bulldogs had not been swept in a regular season series by an Ivy member since 2009. That season was also the last time Yale lost at home. The win puts the Crimson at the top of the Ivy League standings with the Bulldogs, tied with an 8-2 conference record. Harvard’s sweep in New Haven snapped the Bulldog’s 36-match winning streak at home and improved their own win streak to seven -- the most wins in-a-row for Harvard since its 13-match streak in 1997.
The match against Yale was also significant for sophomore Corinne Bain, as her stellar performance earned her a third Ivy League Player of the Week honor this season. Named last year’s unanimous Ivy League Rookie of the Year, Bain breached new heights after recording a pair of triple-doubles in last week’s contests to bring her total to eight on the season.
Complementing Bain’s 10 kills, 25 assists, 15 digs and .400 hitting percentage against the Bulldogs were juniors Kathleen Wallace and Caroline Holte. Wallace had 12 kills while Holte managed a noteworthy .727 percentage after committing zero errors on 11 attempts with eight kills.
Final Home Stand for Four Seniors
This weekend marks the final time the seniors will take the court for the Red and Blue in The Palestra, as Penn says good-bye to Meghan Connolly, Trina Ohms, Taylor Smith, and Kendall Turner.
Connolly, a setter from Atlanta and named a captain this year, leads the team in service aces per set and ranks sixth in the Ivy League.
Ohms, a right-side hitter from Palo Alto, California and named a captain this year, has four or more kills in 13 matches and two or more blocks seven times this season.
Turner, a middle blocker from Highlands Ranch, Colorado, ranks fifth in the Ivy League with 0.97 blocks per set. Against Columbia, she set single-match highs with 12 kills and eight blocks.
Smith, a middle blocker from Dripping Springs, Texas, had her career cut short due to injury. However, she leads the team with spirit and enthusiasm.