Owls Square Off Against Nationally-Ranked Blue Jays

Bryn Mawr volleyball team ready to receive a serve against Johns Hopkins in September 2018

BRYN MAWR, Pa. - The Bryn Mawr volleyball team welcomed their first Centennial Conference opponent of the season to the Class of 1958 earlier Saturday. Johns Hopkins brought their #16 AVCA Coaches Poll ranking to town to take on the Owls, and they certainly showcased some impressive talent. The Owls battled hard all match, and did improve their play as the afternoon went on after a tough start, but ultimately the Blue Jays claimed a 3-0 win of the match. The Owls were led by two kills apiece from Jessie Zong and Penelope Newall. Louisa Kishton led the visitors with ten kills.

Johns Hopkins got off to a strong start in the match, winning the first three points of the day. However, the Owls rebounded and got on the board thanks to a Blue Jays service error. Unfortunately for Bryn Mawr, Johns Hopkins won the next eight points, stretching out to a big advantage. Camille Baechler tallied the first kill of the day for the Owls to stop that rally, and then later another service error gave Bryn Mawr another point. In fact, Hopkins errors gave Bryn Mawr five of their seven points in the frame, as Newall was the only other player to register a kill for the Owls in the opening set. In the end, Johns Hopkins claimed the first frame by a 25-7 margin.

The second set saw definite improvement in the Owls' level of play. Bryn Mawr started to gel offensively, running their attacks more efficiently and finding some holes in the Blue Jays defense. Zong got things opened up for the Owls with a kill on the opening point, and then Bryn Mawr won two more points on her serve to take a 3-0 lead. Later, four different Johns Hopkins errors put Bryn Mawr ahead 7-4. The Owls continued to carry an advantage into the middle of the match, as another kill from Zong helped bump Bryn Mawr's lead to 10-8. However, that would be the last lead of the set for the Owls, as Johns Hopkins won 14 straight points to take a 22-11 lead. Two more errors from the Blue Jays gave the Owls a couple more points, but Johns Hopkins closed out the set with a 25-13 win.

Once again, Bryn Mawr put up a solid fight in the third set. Sienna Burnett got her first kill of the night, and that paired with a Hopkins error made it a 2-2 contest early on. However, the Blue Jays won seven straight points to run out to a large lead, forcing Bryn Mawr to try and battle their way back into the set. Newall got another kill, and later Nicole Wood earned a service ace. Johns Hopkins contributed with plenty more errors in the set as well, but it just wasn't enough for the Owls to find their way back, as Johns Hopkins ultimately closed out their 3-0 win with a 25-12 win in the third set.

The Owls will look to rebound from today's match when they get back in action next week. Bryn Mawr will travel to Chestertown, Maryland on Wednesday evening to take on Washington College. Gametime against the Shorewomen is slated for 7:00 PM.