Volleyball's streak at seven after two wins at AIC

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. – The Saint Anselm College volleyball team stretched its winning streak to seven matches by topping Northeast-10 Conference foe American International College in four sets and non-conference opponent Mercy College in three sets on Saturday afternoon at Henry A. Butova Gymnasium.

Saint Anselm 3, American International 1 | Box

In the opener, Madison Sollows, Katy Teets, Amanda Bickford and Amanda Williams each had eight kills to lead Saint Anselm (12-1, 3-0 NE-10) to its third-straight win to start NE-10 play with a 25-21, 13-25, 25-18, 25-19 victory over American International (14-4, 1-2 NE-10). The Hawks hit over .250 in each of the final two sets to defeat the Yellow Jackets for the second time in the last three seasons after having lost 10 in a row in the series.

Jewel Hays orchestrated the balanced attack with 30 assists and also added 11 digs and three aces. CC Chrisom tallied a team-best 16 digs, while Sarah Lowery added 15. Williams was in on five block assists, while Bickford was part of three.

Saint Anselm started the match by winning nine of the first 12 points to take an early lead. The Hawks eventually led by nine, 24-15, late in the set before the Yellow Jackets rattled off six consecutive points to get within three. Saint Anselm closed it out on a block by Catherin McCarthy and Sollows.

After the Hawks won the first point of the second set, AIC won the next 11 points to take command. The Yellow Jackets built their biggest lead of the set at 19-6 and went on to even the match at a set apiece by hitting .320 in the second.

Trailing 5-2 in the third, Saint Anselm went on a 10-1 run to take a six-point lead. Lowery had two kills and Bickford and Williams combined for a pair of blocks in the run. Late in the set, the Yellow Jackets fended off three set points only for Williams to wrap up the set with a kill.

Neither team led by more than two in the fourth until the Hawks opened up a 13-10 lead midway through the set. The score remained tight until Saint Anselm won the final five points to take the set 25-19 and seal the victory.

Saint Anselm 3, Mercy 0 | Box

In its second match of the day, Saint Anselm hit .281, including .356 over the first two sets, to take down Mercy 25-19, 25-19, 25-23. Katy Teets led the offense with 10 kills and a .444 attack percentage, while Brennah Gladwill added nine kills and hit an even .500.

Riley Grussing recorded 25 assists, six digs, three aces and a pair of kills as the Hawks hit nine aces over the three-set win. Amy Stankiewicz and Danielle Isbell each made seven digs, while Julia Keeler and Teets had had a pair of block assists.

After leading 9-7 in the early stages, Saint Anselm gradually opened up a sizeable 19-12 advantage in the opening set. Teets had two kills at the start of the run as the Hawks took an early lead while hitting .346 in the first set.

Saint Anselm's only deficit in the second set was 1-0 but Mercy hung close until the final few points. The Hawks' largest lead of the set was four until closing out the final three points of the set on kills by Teets and Gladwill and a Stankiewicz ace. Saint Anselm committed just one error and hit .364 in set two.

Down by two sets, Mercy raced out to an 11-4 lead in the third before Saint Anselm went on a 9-2 run to even the set at 13-13. The Hawks broke an 18-18 deadlock with kills by Grussing and McCarthy and went on to finish off the sweep.

Saint Anselm returns to Stoutenburgh Gymnasium to face cross-town rival Southern New Hampshire University on Tuesday, Oct. 4 at 7 p.m. The Hawks topped the Penmen in four sets in a non-conference match back on Sept. 13 at SNHU Fieldhouse.

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