Volleyball Wins Tufts Tourney; Rowe Named MVP

The MIT women’s volleyball team was crowned champion of the 2007 Tufts University Invitational this past Saturday. Both the Engineers and Wellesley College finished the two-day tournament with 4-0 records, but MIT was awarded the title because its 12-1 record in games played was stronger than Tufts’ 12-5 ledger. Katherine C. Rowe ’10 was named the Tournament MVP, while Amanda J. Morris ’08 was selected to the All-Tournament Team.

The Engineers (19-1) began the weekend with a 30-20, 30-26, 30-12 victory over Bridgewater State College. For Morris, three was the magic number as she notched 33 assists, three aces, three blocks, and three digs. Barden E. Cleeland ’10 led the way with 12 kills on 19 attempts and one error for a .579 hitting percentage to go along with a team-high four blocks. Rowe tallied nine digs and four aces, while Jennifer Li ’11 contributed 11 kills and three aces. Rose Zhong ’08 anchored the defense with 14 digs, followed by 10 from Carrie C. Buchanan ’08. Lindsay E. Hunting ’09 chipped in three aces.

Rowe and Cleeland both recorded 13 kills, with hitting percentages of .667 and .550, respectively, in MIT’s 30-26, 30-22, 30-18 win over the State University of New York in Brockport. Katrina M. Ellison ’10 and Li each posted eight kills, while Ellison tallied four blocks and Li notched four aces. Defensively, Buchanan paced the Engineers with 16 digs, and Cleeland collected three blocks. Morris finished the night with 29 assists and eight digs.

In Saturday’s opener against Elizabethtown College, which the Engineers won 30-23, 30-21, 30-25, Rowe rattled off 12 kills, five blocks, and a hitting percentage of .478. Zhong and Ellison each tallied eight kills, with Zhong collecting a team-high 16 digs. Buchanan recorded 12 digs, as Cleeland contributed four blocks and three aces. Morris posted her first double-double of the day on 40 assists and 10 digs in addition to four blocks.

Ellison had one of the best outings of her career as she registered 16 digs, 14 kills, a .303 hitting percentage, seven aces, and six blocks against Tufts in a 32-34, 30-25, 30-19, 30-19 victory. Rowe chipped in 12 kills and six blocks, while Li bolstered the front row’s total with 12 kills. Buchanan led MIT’s defense with 23 digs, followed by 18 from Zhong, as Cleeland collected nine blocks. Morris wrapped up the weekend with 44 assists, 15 digs, and six blocks.