Panthers fall to NESCAC power in non-conference action
AMHERST, Mass. – Freshman Alexa Price (Moultonborough, N.H.) notched team highs of 14 assists and five kills, but Plymouth State University dropped a non-conference women's volleyball match to Amherst College by a 3-0 (25-11, 25-18, 25-17) score Wednesday night at LeFrak Gymnasium.
The Panthers got a career-high 12 digs from senior Ari Linden (Lena, Ill.), but Amherst was able to match its best start since the 2015 season as the Mammoths remained unbeaten on the year, improving to 7-0. PSU drops to 7-6 overall.
Plymouth State 0, Amherst 3
Plymouth State 7-6
How it Happened:
* Amherst jumped out to a 7-1 lead in the early stages of the first set. PSU pulled to within 9-5 following a Mammoth error, but the home team ran five straight points to force a Panthers' timeout. Amherst didn't allow PSU to string together more than two consecutive points the rest of the set on the way to a 25-11 win.
* The Panthers started strong in set two, as kills from juniors Lex Bowers (Port St. Lucie, Fla.) and Allie Rogers (Sandown, N.H.), paired with an ace from freshman Maria Wimpey (Concord, N.H.), gave the visitors a quick 4-2 lead. The hosts rallied to pull in front in the middle stages building a 16-11 advantage, but PSU clawed back to tie the game at 17-apiece following a kill from Price. The Mammoths stopped the rally with a kill, then surged ahead with five straight points on the way to a 25-18 victory.
* Amherst took a 5-1 lead in the third set, but the Panthers scored five-of-six to even the game at 6-6. The hosts pulled back in front, using a 9-3 spurt to take a 15-9 lead. Back-to-back kills from junior Alisha Flanagan (Milton, N.H.) and an Amherst error pulled PSU to within 15-12, but the Mammoths scored four-of-five for a 19-13 lead and the Panthers were unable to rally to force a fourth set.
Inside the Numbers:
* Price's five kills came without an error, while Bowers and Flanagan added four kills apiece.
* Flanagan added two aces and 11 digs to her effort.
* Junior Claire Dennis (Palo Alto, Calif.) paced the Mammoths with nine kills, while freshman Sophie Launsbach (Los Angeles, Calif.) added seven kills without an error.
* Junior Charlotte Duran (Newport Beach, Calif.) registered a match-high 33 assists for Amherst.
* The Panthers fall to 1-4 all-time against the Mammoths. PSU's lone win came in 2005, the last time the two teams met.
Straight from the Coach's Mouth:
"Even though we lost today it was a moral victory," said head coach Joan Forge. "Tonight was our best performance of the season. We are very excited to turn the corner and are building momentum for Rhode Island College on Saturday."
* Plymouth State heads to RIC for a pair of matches on Saturday (Sept. 22). PSU faces the host Anchorwomen in a Little East Conference (LEC) showdown at noon, followed by a non-conference game with Trinity at 2:00 p.m.
* Amherst hosts Trinity for a New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) match on Friday (Sept. 21). First serve is set for 7:00 p.m.
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