Volleyball defeated by Wildcats

by Justin Evans | 11/6/97 6:00am

Coming off a weekend in which they secured their best ever Ivy League finish, the Dartmouth women's volleyball team fell flat last night in a loss to the Wildcats of University of New Hampshire, 16-14, 3-15, 10-15, 11-15.

"It was an ugly little match," Dartmouth head coach Ann Marie Larese said. "Nothing was really sharp or crisp."

The Big Green (19-6) established themselves early on in the first game, but gave up a seven point lead late in the game to let the Wildcats (18-8) back in.

With the shock of the first game's comeback still ringing in their minds, the team jumped all over the Wildcats in the second game. With the UNH crowd quieted, Dartmouth carried its early lead all the way to the end of the game.

"We did everything that we needed to do in the second game," Larese said. "Our passing and serving was good."

The final two games went the way of the first, with lackluster serving and erratic passing and hitting plagued the Big Green.

"Everything was about one step slow, from the passing, to the setting, to the hitting and the blocking," Larese said.

The Big Green defeated UNH in three games earlier this season, but Dartmouth faced a much improved Wildcat team last night.

"They've improved a lot since the last time we played them," Larese said. "UNH has been playing so well these past few weeks."

Adding to the team's frustration was what Larese described as "poor officiating."

"It's hard to be positive when things that are out of your control don't go your way," she added.

Emily Hallenbeck '99 and Janna Merryfield '00 both logged 13 kills on the night, while also leading the defensive effort with 13 and 15 digs, respectively.

With the Big Green's recent victories over Brown and Yale still visible in the rear-view mirror, and the Ivy League Championships looming near, the last night's disappointing performance wasn't a shock to Larese.

"I suspected that there would be an emotional letdown," she said. "It's hard not to focus on the Ivies."

"We've got to focus on each opponent individually, control our errors, and pass a better," she added.

The Big Green have three matches remaining in their regular season, including a home match this Friday in Leede Arena against Hartford. The first serve flies at 7 p.m.

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