WORCESTER, Mass. - The MIT women's volleyball team emerged with a hard-fought 30-28, 25-19, 25-19 victory at Clark University on Tuesday night. Senior Tatiana Berger (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.) paced the Engineers (13-5, 4-1 NEWMAC) with 16 kills and 11 digs to go along with two aces.
Senior Rachel Hunt (Arlington Heights, Ill.) connected on 10 of her 16 hitting attempts for a .625 performance and tacked on two blocks for the Cardinal and Gray. Junior Jenny Astrachan (Austin, Texas) tallied 12 kills, five digs, and four aces as senior Emma Gargus (Columbus, Ohio) posted four aces and five digs. Freshmen Jennie Glerum (Redmond, Wash.) and Tori Wuthrich (Grosse Pointe Woods, Mich.) both collected seven digs as Glerum tacked on two aces. Junior Nicole Gagnier (Atlanta, Ga.) rounded out the squad with 41 assists.
The opening set was a back-and-forth battle which saw Clark reach set point at 24-23. A blast by senior Kristine Bunker (Falmouth, Mass.) evened the score while an Atrachan kill gave the Engineers the slight edge. The Cougars responded by earning three more set points, the last time at 28-27. Berger's kill provided the last tie as Gargus closed out the frame with an ace and a kill.
Trailing 6-4 in the second stanza, MIT mounted an 18-3 run to claim the lead for good. Despite the deficit, Clark continued to attack as it narrowed the gap to five (24-19). However, the Engineers replied with an Astrachan kill to end the comeback bid.
In the third set, MIT raced out to a 7-0 advantage, but the Cougars knotted the frame at 10. The Engineers responded with a 9-3 run to gain some breathing room; however, Clark generated another spurt that brought it within one (19-18). Following a timeout by the visitors, MIT registered six of the last seven points, including three kills from Hunt, to capture the victory.
Next up for MIT will be a home tri-match against non-conference foes Simmons College and Bowdoin College on Saturday, Oct. 5.