Oct. 11, 2007
CAMBRIDGE, Mass. - With a 30-14, 30-27, 30-22 decision over Keene State College, MIT's women's volleyball team picked up its 18th straight victory and gave head coach Paul Dill his longest winning-streak during his 12-year tenure with the program. The win lifted the Engineers' ledger to 22-1 while the Owls' record fell to 16-9.
MIT raced out to an 11-3 advantage in the opening frame and eventually extended its lead to double-digits (19-9). Keene State won the ensuing point, but the Engineers countered with seven unanswered points (26-10) behind strong serving from Rose Zhong. Each side registered three-point spurts before trading points to close out the game.
In the second stanza, the Owls established a 4-3 edge but a strike down the line by Jenny Li evened the contest. MIT went on an 8-1 run that resulted in a 12-5 lead. Keene State narrowed the gap to one (13-12), which was followed by a trio of points from each team. The Engineers responded with a 10-2 run that pushed their advantage to 26-17. The Owls continued to attack, eventually closing the gap to one point (27-26). A service error gave MIT some extra breathing room, but Keene State captured the next side out. A block by Barden Cleeland and an ace from Emily Obert sealed the win for the Cardinal and Gray.
A four-point serving stretch by Jamie Levine gave Keene State an 11-5 lead in the final game. Following its own timeout, MIT ended the run but the Owls quickly extended its advantage to seven (13-6) for its largest margin of the night. The Engineers slowly chipped away at the deficit and knotted the frame at 15. Following three more ties, with the last occurring at 18, MIT scored 12 of the next 15 points to complete the comeback.
Zhong recorded a solid outing for the Engineers, finishing with 12 digs, nine kills, and three aces. Katie Rowe posted a match-high 14 kills and three blocks as Katrina Ellison contributed 10 kills. Li and Cleeland notched nine and eight kills respectively while Cathy Melnikow collected eight digs. Lindsay Hunting and Carrie Buchanan each tallied six digs as Hunting earned three aces. Amanda Morris totaled 43 assists to go along with seven digs.
Kelly Yankowski paced Keene State with 12 kills, eight digs, and one block. Carly Newton added eights kills and a block while Jordan Pokryfki dished out 26 assists.
Both teams will continue non-conference play this weekend. MIT will host its Quad Invitational while Keene State will compete in the Smith College Tournament.