NEW YORK - Columbia volleyball suffered a tough loss on the road Saturday, as the Lions fell to Ivy League foe Harvard, 3-0 in Cambridge, Mass. The Crimson took the win 25-23, 25-21, 25-23, setting the Lions back to 11-6 overall and 5-2 in the Ivy League.
The match was a close one, but Harvard managed to pull out the wins at the end of each set to take the victory. Set one saw the Crimson go up 5-2 on the visiting Lions, and though Columbia would rally to tie it at 6-6 and take the lead, Harvard would battle back and tie it up at 10. Again, Columbua would pull ahead, using a service ace from Megan Gaughn and a kill from Colleen Brennan to lead 14-12, but the crimson rallied back, tying it up at 17, and going from there, Harvard used a solo block to go up 24-21, and though the Lions battled against set point to score twice more, the Crimson used a kill to end it, taking the first set, 25-23.
Up 1-0, Harvard used the momentum to go up early on the Lions in the second set as well, 4-2. Again, Columbia would rally to tie it, as a kill from first-year Caitlin Brenton made it 7-7. The two teams stayed locked in a battle throughout the set, until Harvard used three straight service aces to take a 21-19 lead. Though Columbia would score once on a block from Gaughn and Savannah Fletcher, Harvard finished it by capitalizing on a Columbia error, 25-21.
Down 2-0, Columbia was in a similar position as the night before, but this time, the Lions couldn’t rally the momentum needed to shift the tide. Harvard came out strong in the third set, taking a 7-2 lead and putting the Lions back on their heels. Columbia stayed down for most of the set, until the Lions managed to rally back and tie it at 16 all. From there, it was anyone’s set, as the two teams fought it out to the very end. But with the match tied at 23, Harvard took a time out, and that gave the Crimson a game plan, Harvard came out strong once again, and back-to-back kills from the Crimson ended it, 25-23, and giving Harvard the match, 3-0.
Megan Gaughn led the Lions with 11 kills and 8 digs, while senior Cindy Chen had 15 digs, two services aces and two kills. First-year Caitlin Brenton had six kills hitting .357, along with three blocks. Sophomore Colleen Brennan had 29 assists, four digs and three blocks, while junior Heather Braunagel had eight kills and four blocks. Charlee Dyroff had 15 digs in the loss.
Up next, the Lions host Cornell for the start of the second half of the Ivy League season, Saturday, October 22 in Levien Gymnasium at 5 p.m.