Volleyball could not continue its late-season surge of wins this weekend, dropping matches to both Princeton and Penn away from home.
Despite having defeated Dartmouth and Harvard at home in their previous two games, extending a winning streak to four games, the Lions (9-12, 4-8 Ivy) struggled away from home, as they have all year. The Light Blue did not win any of the seven Ivy League games they played away from home this year.
The Lions were dealt a heavy blow in Princeton on Friday night, as the Tigers (16-6, 9-3 Ivy) swept them in a straight-set victory, 18-25, 23-25, 20-25.
The Light Blue could not get anything going offensively, as senior right side Anja Malesevic could only register eight kills—a far cry from the 27 that she put up just one week ago. The one bright spot on the offense was sophomore middle blocker Chichi Ikwuazom, who had nine kills and four blocks, hitting for a .368 shot conversion rate, in an otherwise forgettable afternoon for Columbia.
Following its disappointing showing in Princeton, the Light Blue traveled to Philadelphia to take on Penn (12-9, 7-5 Ivy), which eked out a five-set victory just three weeks ago at Levien Gymnasium. Saturday’s game once again stretched out to five sets, with the Quakers once again reigning supreme with scores of 18-25, 20-25, 25-23, 25-16, 9-15.
The Lions, however, did not roll over as they did against the Tigers. Malesevic bounced back with 27 kills—her third match out of the last four in which she eclipsed that career-high number. Ikwuazom almost tripled her block count from the previous game with 11. Junior outside hitter Natasha Kosowicz played well defensively, digging 22 balls for a new career best, but she and the rest of the Lions could not hold the Quakers from victory.
The Lions will be in action for their final games of the season this weekend, taking on Brown on Friday and Yale on Saturday. First serve is slated for 7 p.m. and 5 p.m., respectively, at Levien Gymnasium.