BOSTON, Mass. - The Plymouth State University women's volleyball team split a pair of matches Saturday afternoon at a Little East Conference round robin at the University of Massachusetts Boston, defeating UMass Dartmouth in straight sets (27-25, 25-16, 25-12) but falling in three sets to host UMB (25-16, 25-19, 25-22) at the Clark Athletic Center.
The outcome leaves UMB as the only unbeaten team in LEC play this season. The Beacons, who also swept UMD, won their 11th straight contest and improved to 24-4 overall and 5-0 in the LEC, while PSU is now 25-4 overall and 6-1 in conference play. UMB, which in enjoying its best season in school history, is ranked second in the New England Division III poll and PSU is 11th. UMD falls to 17-8 and 0-5 with its two losses.
The Beacons owned a 14-7 advantage in the first set over PSU, but the Panthers closed to within 19-16 before UMB closed out the frame with six straight points. The Beacons took a seemingly commanding 16-7 advantage in the second set, only to see the Panthers rip off seven straight points on senior Kathy Frankowski's (Farmington, Conn.) serve. UMB scored eight of the final 12 points to take the set and a 2-0 lead.
The teams were tied at 13-13 in the third set before the Beacons scored six straight points to take a 19-13 lead, but the Panthers later knotted the stanza at 22-22. UMB scored the final three points to win the match in the battle of the final two unbeaten conference teams.
Senior Kate McWhorter (Bakersfield, Calif.) led the Beacons with a match-high 19 kills and a .548 hitting mark to go with 12 digs for her 13th double-double of the year. Freshman Shannon Thompson (Moorpark, Calif.) recorded 12 kills, while sophomore setter Cassy Hanneman (Denver, Colo.) racked up 40 assists.
Senior Eliza Badeau (Foster, R.I.) led Plymouth State with 10 kills on a .304 hitting percentage. Senior Brianna Kleckner (Terryville, Conn.) set for 20 assists. Sophomore libero Alex Avery (Milton, N.H.) recorded a match-high 16 digs to anchor the defense.
Badeau dominated UMass Dartmouth with 18 kills and a .500 hitting clip, while senior Carly Newton (Centerville, Mass.) put down eight kills. Kleckner registered 36 assists and Avery recorded a match-high 26 digs.
Plymouth State returns to action Tuesday with a non-conference match at Salem State, while UMass Boston hosts Emerson College the same night.
(Courtesy of UMass Boston Sports Information)
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