Polar Bears Prepared for NESCAC Women's Volleyball Tournament

Taylor Vail is averaging 3.66 digs/set this season (More photos at www.CIPhotography.com)
Taylor Vail is averaging 3.66 digs/set this season (More photos at www.CIPhotography.com)

WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. - The Bowdoin College women's volleyball team will look to win its second conference championship as they travel to Williams College this weekend to compete in the 2013 NESCAC Championship beginning Friday.

The Polar Bears (21-6, 8-2 NESCAC) are the second seed in the conference tournament and will open play against seventh-seeded Trinity (15-11, 5-5 NESCAC) on Friday evening at 5:00 p.m. Friday's match will not include live coverage, but there will be a webcast of Saturday's NESCAC Semifinals and Sunday's Championship match. Complete details are available at http://www.nescac.com

Bowdoin (21-6, 8-2 NESCAC) earned the second seed after posting its third consecutive 20-win season. In the second half of the season, the Polar Bears rattled off a 12-match winning streak that ended on October 26. Defense is critical for Bowdoin, as it leads the league with 2.41 blocks per set, and has one of the best liberos in the NESCAC in Taylor Vail (3.66 digs/set). The return of Christy Jewett from injury (3.02 kills/set) has sparked the Polar Bear offense down the stretch, as Bowdoin boasts one of the most balanced offenses in the league, featuring nine different players averaging more than 1.0 kills/set. The Polar Bears also lead the league in service aces, averaging 2.48/set this fall.

The Polar Bears are in search of their second overall NESCAC trophy, having captured their lone title in 2011. It is the third consecutive season that Bowdoin has won 20 matches - a first in program history - and the Polar Bears are looking to make their third-consecutive NCAA Tournament appearance.

Bowdoin faces Trinity (15-11, 5-5 NESCAC) in its quarterfinal match. The Bantams have a scrappy defense that leads the league in digs per set (18.12). Senior Hannah Brickley (Melrose, Mass.) is one of the best six-rotation players in the conference, as she has 345 kills and 358 digs on the season. Trinity is looking for its elusive first NESCAC title, as it makes its 12th NESCAC Championship appearance. Bowdoin won this year's meeting versus the Bantams, 3-0, on October 19. The Polar Bears won the only NESCAC Championship match-up between the two teams, which was in a 2011 semifinal, 3-1. 

The winner of Friday's opening round match will advance to play the winner of Amherst-Middlebury on Saturday at 3:30 p.m. Sunday's NESCAC title match is slated for noon.

Click here [for iOS users] or on the viewer to hear senior captain Ellie Brennan's thoughts on the upcoming conference tournament.