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Owls Celebrate Senior Day with Strong Showing Against Diplomats

Nicole Wood kill attempt fall 2021

BRYN MAWR, Pa. – The Owls volleyball squad continued their busy week with a Saturday contest against Franklin & Marshall at home, with Bryn Mawr also honoring the careers of their two seniors prior to today's contest. Aaliyah Joseph and Nicole Wood have been four-year members of the program and provided a strong leadership foundation throughout several coaching changes and the difficulties of COVID. After a joyous celebration of their careers prior to today's final weekend match of the season for Bryn Mawr, the Owls took plenty of momentum into their matchup against the Diplomats. Bryn Mawr put together a strong start right out of the gate and made Franklin & Marshall work for every point in what ended up being a 3-0 (25-16, 25-17, 25-16) win for the Diplomats. Wood posted six kills and six digs on the day while Joseph added two kills, two assists, and four digs for the Owls. Sydney Collins posted a 10 assist/10 dig double-double as well for Bryn Mawr. Franklin & Marshall got an impressive 21 kill performance from Allison Franke, while Annmarie Earley tallied 34 assists on the day for the Dips.

Wood nailed a kill right out of the gate to hand the Owls a lead early in the first set, and the hosts would go on a charge from there. Collins posted an ace with a nice serve on the next point, and then an attack error gave the Owls a 3-0 advantage. A few points later, another error and another ace, this time from Wood, bumped the hosts ahead 5-2. Bryn Mawr continued their strong service game, as Orli McGuire-Berk nailed an ace of her own a little later, and then Zoe Boxill posted a couple of kills to give the Owls a 9-5 lead. However, Franklin & Marshall would wake up from there, winning 10 of the next 12 points to take a 15-11 lead of their own. A kill from Wood helped put a stop to that run, but the Owls couldn't generate much more offense from there. Several more errors from the Diplomats gave the hosts a few more points, but Franklin & Marshall would ultimately close out the set by a 25-16 score.

It was the Diplomats who jumped out to an early lead in the second set, as the visitors pulled away to a 9-3 advantage early. Aaliyah Joseph got a quick kill early in the frame, and then Wood and Boxill added a couple of their own to help Bryn Mawr pull back within 9-6. A bit later in the set, Wood added two more kills to help the Owls stay within three points of their opponents. A five-point run allowed the visitors to extend their lead, but Bryn Mawr hung in thanks to five more errors from the Diplomats. However, Franklin & Marshall closed out the set with a couple more kills and a score of 25-17.

The third set proved to be much more back-and-forth in the early going. Three service errors from the Diplomats and an ace from McGuire-Berk gave Bryn Mawr a slim 4-3 lead, and then the Owls stayed close thanks to two more service errors from the visitors. Wood finally notched Bryn Mawr's first kill of the set to get the Owls within 9-7, but then Franklin & Marshall ran off eight straight points to take a 17-7 advantage. Bryn Mawr's next six points came on Diplomats errors, and then Joseph put home another kill on a feed from Collins to make it 21-14 in favor of the visitors. Collins added a kill of her own later in the frame, but the Diplomats ultimately closed out the set 25-16 to take the match by a 3-0 score.

The Owls will kick off their final week of the season next week with a home matchup against Swarthmore on Tuesday night. Game time against the Garnet is slated for 7:00 PM in the Class of 1958 Gymnasium on Tuesday.