Cambridge, Mass. - The University of Pennsylvania volleyball team picked up its first Ivy League win of the season with a thrilling 3-2 victory at Harvard (8-6, 1-1). Friday evening. Penn (6-7, 1-1) took an exciting Game 1, 35-33, but lost the next two; 30-19 and 30-21. The Quakers answered back taking Game 4, 30-27 and Game 5, 15-11.
Harvard held a decisive 20-13 lead in the first set. The game looked to be all but over, however, the Quakers started to chip away at the deficit. Penn managed to tie the score after an Anna Shlimak kill and a Harvard attack error. The Crimson held onto the lead and served game-point at 33-32. The Quakers answered back with consecutive kills from Stephanie Gwin and Linda Zhang to give Penn a 34-33 lead. On the next serve; Shlimak and Natalie Drucker combined for a block assist to give the Red and Blue Game 1.
Harvard cruised to wins in the next two games and looked as if they could hand the Quakers their second League loss. In Game 4, Harvard cut every Penn lead close until the end. With the game tied at 26, the Quakers scored five of the final six points to tie the score at 2-2.
In the decisive fifth game, Penn built leads of 5-1 and 8-3. Harvard battled back to pull within two, but a kill by Gwin and a Crimson attack error gave Penn its first Ivy League win of the season.
Shlimak and Turner each delivered a team-high 15 kills. Zhang and Kira Campbell combined for 56 assists. The Quakers got a solid effort defensively. Shlimak (25) and Hurst (22) led the Quakers in digs. At the net, Penn had 29 blocks, led by Tuner and Gwin who had six each.
Saturday, Penn travels to Dartmouth for a 4 p.m. start.