WATERVILLE, Maine --- Lizzie Ahern (Corte Madera, Calif.) had 12 kills and three blocks as the Amherst College volleyball team won close first and third sets in a 3-0 win over Colby College in New England Small College Athletic Conference play Friday night at Wadsworth Gymnasium.
Amherst moves to 13-8 overall and 6-3 in conference play heading into Saturday's road match at Bates College at 2 p.m. The Mules fall to 12-11 overall and 2-7 in the league, with Trinity College coming to town Saturday at 2 p.m. The Bantams took a 3-0 win at Bates on Friday.
Amherst took a 25-23, 25-8, 26-24 victory over the Mules, who remain in eighth place in the league standings. The top eight teams make the NESCAC playoffs.
Emily Waterhouse (Los Angeles, Calif.) finished with eight kills and 12 digs for the Jeffs. Kristin Keeno (Honolulu, Hawaii) led the winners with 16 digs and setter Nicole Carter (Irvine, Calif.) had 34 assists, eight digs, and two aces.
Kim Donaldson (Colorado Springs, Colo.) had six of her team-high 11 kills in the third set and added a match-high five blocks. Maggie Taylor (Washington, D.C.) added nine kills and 16 digs, Emily Varni (Manhattan Beach, Calif.) also had 16 digs, and Kate Pleasants (Virginia Beach, Va.) dished 25 assists.
Colby fought back from a 14-9 deficit in the first set by using an 8-0 scoring run to take a 17-14 lead. The Mules took their last lead of the set at 21-20 and the set was tied at 22-22. Amherst, though, won two straight points to take a 24-22 margin, survived a kill by Taylor, and then won the final point for the 25-23 margin.
The Jeffs came out strong in the second set, taking leads of 9-2 and 16-4 to take early control on the way to the 25-8 victory.
Colby fought back a few times in the final set to nearly force a fourth game. Amherst had an early 6-3 lead only to see the Mules get back to an 11-11 tie. With the Jeffs up 23-17, Colby ran off seven straight points to take a 24-23 lead. Amherst again won the big late points in the set and scored three straight to pull out the match.