While Brown may have been heavily favored in Saturday's match against the Harvard women's volleyball team, the odds eventually fell in Harvard's favor.
The odd-numbered games, that is.
The Crimson won the first, third and fifth sets to capture its 13th victory of the season-the most ever in a single season for the squad.
It was also the first time that Harvard defeated Brown since a 3-0 decision in 1981.
Harvard (now 13-8, 3-4 Ivy League) recorded a tough 15-13, 8-15, 15-12, 10-15, 15-10 victory over the Bruins, which also dropped Brown from second to fourth place in the Ivies.
"Our serves were really well good," freshman Carolyn Burger said. "We played well in the backcourt. We were able to dig a lot of their shots."
Co-Captain Maia Forman, one of the best setters in the collegiate ranks, recorded an amazing 41 assists: her second-highest total of the season.
"Maia is a fantastic setter," Brown Coach Cathy Fulford said. "She is also a great defensive player.
Forman added seven aces, two dinks and two block points.
"Maia [Forman] set really well," Co-Captain Jodi Cassell said. "Our passing was much better. We did a lot of dinking against their big blockers."
Manda Schossberger recorded a team-high 14 kills, two dink points and a team-leading four blocks. Cassell finished with 13 kills, one block and a team-high eight dinks.
In the first set, the spikers quickly jumped out to a 7-3 lead on smashes by Pascale Jean-Louis, Cassell and Lee Polikoff (six kills).
Brown fought back to tie the match, 10-10, before Harvard captured five of the next seven points to win the set.
Harvard Coach Wayne Lem pointed to his squad's service game, defensive coverage, passing, and net play as the keys to their victory.
"We were really psyched after winning the first set," Schossberger said. "Even after we lost the second set, we knew we could beat this team."
Two Burgers, Please
After falling behind 8-4 in the second game, the Crimson rolled off four unanswered points, with Burger setting up Schossberger for three kills.
But the Bruins responded with a rally of their own, taking the next seven points to win the set.
After jumping in front, 9-6, in the third set, the spikers held off a late Bruin rally to go up 2-1 in sets. Suzie Tapson (four kills), Polikoff and Jean-Louis registered important kills for the Crimson in the third set.
Brown controlled the fourth set by combining effective blocks and excellent net play.
A Big Hug
In the fifth set, Brown unleashed a fury of spikes at Forman, who had just returned to the line-up after accidently being kicked in the face by Cassell.
Forman was up to the challenge, making several cross-court diving saves.
"I thought I killed her," Cassell said. "I knew Wayne would never forgive me."
The spikers used dink points, kills, and timely blocks to take a 13-10 lead. Burger, who has been solid off the bench all season, closed out the match with two straight kills.
Harvard will play its last matches of the season tomorrow against Wheaton and Assumption. The games will mark the final appearances for seniors Cassell, Tapson, Jean-Louis and Callie Huber at Malkin Athletic Center.