Volleyball Crushes Brown and Hartford; Record moves to 3-1

Izzy Hinckley , Contributing Writer

Volleyball had an outstanding weekend, beating both Brown and Hartford in two exciting matches. The Bison travelled to Sacred Heart’s Hampton Inn Shelton Invitational on Sept. 4-5, where they beat Brown 3-2 and Hartford 3-1. The women are dedicated and eager to continue with their successful 2015 season. Not only do they boast incredible talent, but also commitment to their sport and fellow teammates.

“This weekend we played very well as a team in both of our games. We did a good job of figuring out the other teams’ weaknesses and using that to our advantage to score points when we needed them most,” Stephanie Occhiogrosso ’19 said.

Sept. 4 began with a 2-0 lead by the Bison, which they maintained for an overall winning score of 3-2 against the Bears. The women defeated Brown by scores of 25-23, 25-20, 20-25, 14-25, and 15-9 collectively. This win over Brown was the first in program history, a remarkable achievement and impressive feat for the Orange and Blue. The only other time these teams have competed against one another was 22 years ago in 1993. Outstanding performances include Hailey Stout ’18, who paced another balanced attack from her team. She completed 15 kills on a .326 hitting percentage. Stout also added two aces and 13 digs. Occhiogrosso proved to be another crucial player, with three kills on the Bison’s final four points.

“Even though both teams took a set or two from us, we focused on taking on the game one point at a time and controlling what we can control,” Occhiogrosso said. 

Karen Campbell ’16 had 14 kills and six total blocks, while Blake Buchholz ’19 had 10 kills, becoming the fourth Bison player to join Stout, Occhiogrosso, and Campbell in the double digits. Meghan Wentzel ’16 also had an impressive performance, recording 48 out of 56 assists for the Orange and Blue.

The Bison continued their winning streak, beating Hartford 3-1 during their second game of Sacred Heart’s Hampton Inn Shelton Invitational. The Bison crushed the opposing team with scores of 25-16, 14-25, 25-16, and 25-16. Notable performances include Campbell, who tallied 17 kills and had a hitting percentage above .500 for the second time this season. She also added two solo blocks and three block assists, leading the team with 20 total blocks. Campbell finished with 31 kills and 11 total blocks over just two matches at the event. She was ultimately awarded Tournament MVP, an exciting award during her last volleyball season as a Bison. Additionally, Hana Sawanobori ’18 and Buchholz joined Campbell on the All-Tournament Team. Furthermore, Sawanobori completed 33 digs and three aces while Buchholz tallied 13 kills and eight digs.

“This weekend we played some tougher teams, especially Brown. We were able to continue fighting the whole time to ultimately get that win. Again I am very happy with how our preseason games are going, hopefully we will continue working hard and getting better for the Patriot League Championship,” Wentzel said.

Volleyball will be back on the road on Sept. 11-12, when they travel to Poughkeepsie, N.Y. for their third tournament of the season. The Orange and Blue are scheduled to play La Salle on Sept. 11 and Bryant and Marist on Sept. 12.

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