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Brandeis University's Community Newspaper — Waltham, Mass.

WVolleyball falls at UAA Championship

Published: November 11, 2005
Section: Sports

The UAA Championship was witness to an upset that came from what appeared to be from no where. Who would have thought that number one nationally ranked Washington University, winner of all but one tournament in the 19 year history of the UAA, would be sweptby number 3 nationally ranked Emory (30-25, 30-22, 30-27)? Where was Brandeis you may ask? You would have to look further down.

This was not an easy season and the tournament showed it. Coming off a huge tournament victory in the Judges Classic, they knew that the quality of competition would be far above the likes of teams like Newbury. Brandeis was swept by eventual champion Emory (30-12, 30-25, 30-19), NYU (30-26, 30-19, 30-25) and finished day one bowing to Rochester 3-1 (30-28, 30-25, 26-30, 30-27). Brandeis fought hard in game two for a spot on the top six only to lose a tough match to Case Western, a team with eight freshman on board, 3-2 (30-25, 30-19, 20-30, 30-24, 15-11). The loss dropped them with Chicago as the two unranked teams. Coach Michelle Kim praised the effort of the team in the face of tough competition.
The thing about this team is that we dont give up, no matter who is on the other side of the net we just go out fighting.

Although a frustrating season, there are some definite bright spots on the team, which will remain largely intact with only one graduating senior, Jenna Polinsky. Outside hitter Lorraine Wingenbach 09 consistently lit up the scoresheets all season, finishing the year with a team leading 540 kills and 490 digs. Jenny Sandler 08, a player praised for her aggressiveness by Kim, provided toughness and all-around effort with 480 digs and 377 kills. Setter Violette Ruggiero 09 finished the year with 1279 assists, averaging out to 9.14 per game.

Kim had stated that communication and errors were two areas she hoped would improve when the season began, now at the end, she was not disappointed.

I thought we did much, much better towards the end of our season with the communication and I think part of that came with some of our injured players being out and having different people in encouraged communicationWhen you play against some of the good teams, good teams make you make errors but I thought we handled ourselves pretty well.

Coach Kim is preparing for the off-season, letting the players rest up before going into individual training in the spring.

Happy trails to graduating senior Jenna Polinsky. Praised for her leadership by the coaches, she finished her solid career with 281 kills, 354 digs and a team leading .84 blocks per game. No word on who is to become captain, Coach Kim told me that it will be left up to the players though she does have some unnamed players in mind. With this year over, it is time now to reflect, relax a little, then focus on finding a way to take down the competition, starting with Tufts and working up to Wash U. and Emory.