LEWISBURG, Pa. – The Bucknell volleyball team played in front of a spirited home crowd on Friday night in Davis Gym, competing with energy and strength, but ultimately falling 3-0 to Colgate, the defending Patriot League Champions. Bucknell drops to 8-10 overall and 1-7 in conference play with the loss, while Colgate rises to 14-6 and 6-1 in Patriot League action with the win.
"I think we had a great match," said head coach Anna Allison. "Colgate is a very good team, but we worked hard and made them earn every single point. Our goal is to get better with each match, no matter the outcome, and I believe we did that tonight."
Three Bison seniors led Bucknell’s offense, as Kristen Titley, Morgan Mientus and Jessica Serrato each contributed seven kills over the course of the match. Titley’s .400 hitting percentage was a team-high, while Serrato also connected on four blocks. Senior Rose Lewis had 14 assists in the match, while sophomore Katie Price added a match-high 11 digs. Freshman Erika Eastley also had a strong performance, making four blocks and serving up a match-high three aces for the Bison.
A kill from Titley gave Bucknell the first point of the match, but an early battle between the two squads gave way to four Colgate points, putting the Raiders up 8-3. The Bison responded in kind, scoring four of their own to come within one, but a strong serving rotation by Colgate’s Kathleen Harris gave the visitors a 14-7 advantage. Bucknell refused to quit however, taking seven of the next ten points to come within two, but as the teams battled back and forth for the rest of the way Colgate always seemed to come out just slightly ahead. Both Serrato and sophomore Karen Campbell contributed kills to bring the Bison within one at 22-21, but the Raiders would use two kills of their own and an ace to take the first set by a score of 25-21.
The teams exchanged leads in the early part of the second set, with a kill by Serrato knotting the score 6-6 and an ace by Eastly putting the Bison up 8-7. Bucknell would gain a three-point advantage at the midway point of the set, going up 15-12 on a kill by Mientus, but Colgate took seven of the next nine points to gain a two-point advantage. The Bison never gave up, but the Raiders powered through to the finish, sealing a 25-20 win with a kill.
Bucknell came out firing in the third and final set, taking an early 7-3 advantage, but the Raiders responded with six kills and an ace to take a 10-8 lead of their own. An attack error on Colgate and a kill from Titley tied the score 12-12, and the two teams would exchange leads in an intense battle for the next several points. The Raiders broke through with a five-point streak however, taking a 23-16 lead and using two kills to claim the 25-17 set win and the 3-0 match victory.
Diane Seely was Colgate’s offensive leader, hitting .500 as she registered 16 kills in 26 attempts. Kaylee Fifer added 35 assists and four blocks for the Raiders, while Kathleen Harris totaled 11 digs.
Bucknell will take the rest of the weekend off before heading out to Hamilton, N.Y. on Tuesday, Oct. 22 to complete the series with Colgate. The match is scheduled to begin at 7 p.m. on Cotterell Court and will be broadcast live on the Patriot League network.