College Volleyball Final – #4 Bridgewater 3, #5 Guilford 2 (ODAC Tournament quarterfinal)

BRIDGEWATER, Va. – Bridgewater College advanced to the Old Dominion Athletic Conference (ODAC) Volleyball Tournament semifinals with a narrow 3-2 victory over visiting Guilford College Wednesday night in Nininger Hall. The Eagles prevailed 25-22, 25-15, 21-25, 26-28, 15-11.

The fourth-seeded Eagles (21-9) are ranked eighth in the latest NCAA Division III South Region Poll. Guilford, seeded fifth in the eight-team tourney, ends its first ODAC Tournament appearance since 2012 with a 12-14 overall record.

The Quakers overcame a two-set deficit to force a deciding fifth frame. Guilford held a 10-8 fifth-game lead before a hitting error and an Abby Mills service ace knotted the match at 10-10. A Rachel Kinsey service error put Guilford ahead, 11-10, but Bridgewater reeled off the next five points to clinch the win. Carleigh Studtmann and Rachel Gaston stuffed a Guilford attack before Studtmann’s 14th kill of the night ended the match.

Mills put down a match-high 19 kills and added 11 digs for Bridgewater. Studtmann hit .500 and had a match-high seven blocks (2 solo). Allison Clark also put down 14 balls and Gaston added 10 kills. Jenna Hamra registered 61 assists, 10 digs and three blocks.

Jessica Sheek paced Guilford’s offense with 16 kills on .393 hitting. She also had four blocks. Casey Davis chipped in 11 kills, 11 digs and four blocks. Morgan Tompkins had nine kills, 12 digs and two blocks. Christian Ritter added nine putaways and a club-best 17 digs. Tina Eucker chipped in with 45 assists, 12 digs and three blocks.

Bridgewater advances to play top-seeded Randolph-Macon College Saturday. The Yellow Jackets topped eighth-seeded Roanoke College in a Wednesday quarterfinal match.

Coach Emily Gann graduates senior Becca Benfield and McKenzie Clapp from this year’s team, but could return as many as 16 letter winners next fall.