No. 4 Johnson & Wales Battles No. 22 Women’s Volleyball for a 3-1 Win

Carly Staub
Courtesy of Maude Gull

THE BASICS:

- Score: No. 4 Johnson & Wales 3, No. 22 MIT 1 (25-22, 19-25, 25-23, 25-22)

- Records: No. 22 MIT (10-2); No. 4 Johnson & Wales (10-1)

- Location: Cambridge, Mass. (Rockwell Cage)

- The Lead: In a battle of nationally-ranked non-conference foes, No. 4 Johnson & Wales University emerged with a 25-22, 19-25, 25-23, 25-22 victory over No. 22 MIT in women's volleyball action on Tuesday night. The tightly played contest featured 28 ties and 16 lead changes.

HOW IT HAPPENED:

- Set 1: Tied at 18, JWU rattled off six straight points. MIT responded with a four-point burst, narrowing the gap to 24-22 on a block by freshman Hannah Grupe (Oakwood, Ohio) and junior Shea Landeene (Phoenix, Ariz.). A kill by Katie Leidhold thwarted the comeback attempt and secured the win.

- Set 2: Holding a 12-11 edge, a kill by Grupe sparked a 6-1 run. The Engineers maintained a small cushion, reaching set point on a kill by senior Christina Liao (Warren, N.J.). The Wildcats extended the frame courtesy of a Hannah Dolan kill and a block by Kate Walker and Leidhold. A strike by junior Alexis Groark (Elwood, N.Y.) stopped the late rally and evened the match at one set apiece.

- Set 3: MIT gradually created a 16-10 lead but JWU battled back, tying the set at 18 on a hitting error. A three-point spurt by the Engineers was matched by the Wildcats, maintaining the deadlock. MIT inched out to a 23-21 lead following a Groark kill and a hitting error. However, JWU picked up what proved to be the final four points of the frame, clinching the come-from-behind win on a hitting error.

- Set 4: An ace by Liao gave the hosts a 14-8 advantage. The Wildcats gradually put together a 15-6 run, moving the score to 23-20 on a block by Maria Coniglio. A hitting error coupled with an ace by senior Carly Silvernale (Bellevue, Wash.) kept MIT within striking distance, but Coniglio generated back-to-back kills to close out the match.

INSIDE THE NUMBERS:

- Senior Abby Bertics (La Jolla, Calif.) totaled 14 kills, a team-high 14 digs, and three aces as Groark finished with 12 kills.

- Senior Carly Staub (Palos Verdes Estates, Calif.) bolstered MIT's attack with nine kills while hitting .381 as Landeene notched three blocks.

- Silvernale posted 11 digs and three aces while Liao registered 43 assists and nine digs.

- Leidhold led JWU with 14 kills to go along with three blocks and two aces.

- Coniglio tallied 14 digs, 12 kills, and three blocks as Walker had 11 kills and three blocks.

- Brylee Frank produced 44 assists, 14 digs, and two aces while Elyssa Nicolas collected 14 digs.

- Mikayla Arimura rounded out the Wildcats with 13 digs and two aces.

UP NEXT:

- MIT continues its home stand on Saturday, Sept. 22 when it hosts a tri-match with NEWMAC foe U.S. Coast Guard Academy (12:00 p.m.) and Manhattanville College (4:00 p.m.). Johnson & Wales, meanwhile, will kick off the two-day JWU Invitational on Friday, Sept. 21 when it plays the University of Scranton at 5:00 p.m.

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