MILTON, Mass. – The Curry College women's volleyball team earned an impressive tri-match sweep at home on Saturday afternoon. The Colonels topped Emmanuel College 3-1 and beat Husson University 3-2. Emmanuel topped Husson 3-0 in the middle match. With the wins, the Colonels improve to 5-3 on the season.
Match One: Curry 3, Emmanuel (Mass.) 1 (25-22, 25-20, 10-25, 25-13)
As the first match got underway, it was clear that the two squads were evenly matched, as the score quickly rose to 5-5. Emmanuel crept ahead briefly, but an attack error drew the Colonels to within one at 16-15. The Saints broke off a quick three point run to take their largest lead of the day at 19-15, but the Colonels rallied to score 10 of the next 13 points and took the first set 25-22.
After dropping the initial frame, Emmanuel jumped out to a 7-4 lead in set two, but seven straight points for Curry erased the deficit and gave the hosts an 11-7 edge. The Saints hung with them, as a kill from freshman Elizabeth Syverson (Huntington, Vt.) cut the Colonel lead to just two at 16-14, but the hosts once again finished strong and closed out the set 25-20, thanks to a 9-6 run.
Looking for the sweep, Curry fell flat in the third set, as the Saints pounced on every opportunity presented to them. After Emmanuel took nine of the first 10 points of the new set, the Colonels managed to side out with a block by freshmen Emilie Wilkinson (Lawrenceville, Ga.) and Lauren Guzman (Cranston, R.I.). The Saints were not backing down, however, stretching their lead to 10 at 17-7 and using a 12-4 run to take the third set 25-10.
Despite the lopsided score, the third set stood to be an outlier, as the Colonels got right back to action in the fourth game, taking a 14-3 lead to start the stanza. The Saints went on a 7-3 run to cut into the lead, but the deficit would be far too much to overcome, as Curry took the match by winning set four by a score of 25-13.
Lexi Pereira (Attleboro, Mass.) turned in a match-high 12 kills while the Saints sported two players with 11 kills in Marissa Cataldo (Melrose, Mass.) and Emma Fenton (Monument Beach, Mass.). Libero Samantha Carrigan (Plaistow, N.H.) topped the Saints with 21 digs and Jalen Winfrey (Rochester, N.H.) led the team in assists with 24. Shea Mathews (Concord, N.H.) led the way with 23 digs, one of four Colonels to reach double-digits. Mathews also turned in four service aces while fellow captain Lex Bell (Salem, Conn.) recorded 27 assists. With her 13th assist of the match, Bell broke the all-time career assists record for Curry women's volleyball, finishing the match with 843.
Match Two: Emmanuel 3, Husson 0 (25-19, 25-22, 25-20)
Ready to rebound, the Saints got out to an early 8-2 lead over the Eagles. Husson fought back to get back into the set, but could not get Emmanuel's lead under four. The Saints registered 14 kills in the first frame, collecting the game with a 25-19 score.
The Eagles looked to return the favor in game two, starting off with an 8-3 advantage, but serving runs by Syverson and Winfrey helped Emmanuel get back into the swing of things, before capping off a closely contested game by a score of 25-22.
Despite early ties in the third stanza at 2-2, 5-5, 6-6, 7-7, and 8-8, the Eagles' hopes of avoiding a sweep dwindled as the set went on. Husson capitalized on an Emmanuel error to bring the score to 23-20, in favor of the Saints, but coming out of a timeout, Emmanuel was able to regroup and push the points they needed, closing the match thanks to a score of 25-20 in set three.
In the win, the Saints were led by the 10 kills of Isabella Miller (Blackstone, Mass.) as well as 17 assists from Winfrey. Carrigan rounded out the team highs with 13 digs. Mary Grace Power (Bellerose Village, N.Y.) led the Eagles with eight kills, while Adrienne Beatty (Rochester, N.H.) turned in 10 digs. Hanna Hembrow (Milford, N.H.) tied Winfrey for the match high with her 17 helpers.
The Saints head home with a 4-3 record, but will get back to action with another road match on Tuesday, September 17. The Saints will travel to take on Keene State at 7:00 p.m.
Match Three: Curry 3, Husson 2 (25-19, 25-21, 24-26, 23-25, 15-6)
The third match started with the teams trading points, before a kill from Amanda Wood (Tokyo, Japan) sparked an 8-1 run for the hosts, putting them up 12-6. Husson did not miss a beat and went on a streak of their own, scoring 10 of the next 13 points to take a 16-15 lead, but the Colonels continued to find a second wind near the end of the set, and took game one 25-19.
After a close first set, the opponents once again went back-and-forth, as an attack error brought the score to a 16-16 tie. After another Curry error gave Husson a 19-18 edge, the hosts pulled together and scored seven of nine. After a 25-21 win in game two, the Colonels seemed to be squarely in control of the match, collecting 16 kills and a .294 hitting percentage in the second frame, but the Eagles were not ready to head home yet.
Husson came out fighting in the third set, as another close race saw the Eagles pull ahead to 19-12 thanks to a kill from Sophia Pagliarini (Johnston, R.I.). Curry still head their eyes set on a sweep, however, as the hosts pulled to within two with a five point run. Husson again had them on the ropes at 24-19, before a serving run by Bell snatched up the momentum and tied the score at 24 all. Despite the sudden swing, the Eagles managed to tack on a pair of points thanks to Curry errors, as Husson cut the Colonels' set lead in half with a 26-24 win in set three.
In the fourth frame, Curry again looked poised to end the match, turning a 5-1 deficit into a 13-11 lead. The length of the match began to take its toll, however, as the Eagles powered through to take another lead of their own, this time at 21-18. The hosts again made a late run, tying their guests at 23, but the Eagles scored back-to-back points once more to force a decisive fifth set, thanks to a 25-23 game four win.
After seeing their lead disappear, the Colonels tightened up and got to work in the fifth set, forcing a Husson timeout after taking a 9-3 lead. After the break in play, Curry tacked on three more to their advantage to make it 12-3 and breezed through the remainder of the set to take it 15-6 and earn their first five-set win of the season.
Bell registered 46 assists in the win and was one of two Colonels to hit the 20 dig mark (Mathews, 28). Wood turned in an astounding 24 kill effort to go along with four aces, while Caroline Kilduff (Rockland, Mass.) guarded the net with six blocks (1 solo, 5 assisted). The Eagles were led by three players with double-digit kills in Power (17), Serena Laro (Peabody, Mass., 10), and Cheyenne Young (Eagle River, Alaska, 10). Hembrow matched her setting counterpart with 46 helpers, while Beatty played her role and tallied 26 digs.
Husson departs with a 3-9 record, as they'll next head to Maine Maritime for a 7:00 p.m. road match on Wednesday, September 18. The Colonels will enjoy a couple of off days before getting back on the court on Tuesday, September 17. Curry will travel to take on Becker at 7:00 p.m. in Leicester, Mass.