Golden Bears fall to No. 5 Southwestern (Tex.) before defeating Mills (Calif.)
SANTA CRUZ, Calif. (September 2, 2017) – The Western New England University volleyball team completed its four-match trip at the UC Santa Cruz Slugfest on Saturday evening with a split against No. 5 nationally ranked Southwestern (Tex.) and Mills (Calif.) at West Field House.
Southwestern 3, Western New England 0 (25-16, 25-19, 25-20)
• Seniors Emmaline Chiodini (St. Louis, Mo.) and Alona Kornberg (Fair Lawn, N.J.) led the Golden Bears offensively with nine and eight kills, respectively.
• Sophomore setter Caitlyn Sibiskie (Rockfall, Conn.) handed out 16 assists, and senior libero Brianna Roath (Jackson, N.J.) totaled eight digs.
• Southwestern was led by junior Jamison Duck (Houston, Tex.) and senior Kate Mitchell (Roseville, Calif.), who recorded nine kills each.
• Western New England fell into an early hole in the first set en route to a 25-16 loss. The Golden Bears were more competitive in the second frame, pulling to within two (16-14) midway through the set following a kill by Chiodini. The Pirates pulled away late, however, to open up a 2-0 lead in the contest.
• Needing a third set win to stay alive, the Golden Bears opened up an early 8-5 lead with the help of several Southwestern attack errors. The frame remained close throughout, with Western New England holding its final lead (20-19) on a kill by freshman middle blocker Toni Fiore (Maxwell, Conn.). The Pirates took control late, winning the final six points to finish off the sweep.
Western New England 3, Mills 0 (25-10, 26-24, 25-8)
• Sophomore Cassandra Holmes (Ellington, Conn.), senior Sam Heffer (Bethpage, N.Y.) and Chiodini paced Western New England's balanced offensive effort with seven kills each.
• Freshman setter Jenna McCormack (Nashua, N.H.) appeared in two sets and dished out a match-high 17 assists to go with three service aces and three digs.
• Mills senior outside hitter Jamie Ziolkowski (Grafton, Wis.) recorded four kills and three digs.
• Western New England rolled in the opening set, establishing a 9-0 lead and never looking back. The Golden Bears led by as much as 18 (23-5) late before settling for a 15-point triumph.
• Western New England enjoyed a similar start to the second set, leading 10-3 early, but the Cyclones eventually battled back and pulled even at 23. After another tie, two errors allowed the Golden Bears to take the set and a 2-0 advantage.
• For the third straight frame, Western New England roared out to a commanding lead. This time, the Golden Bears led 15-2 on their way to a 25-8 win to complete the sweep and their first victory of the season.
Western New England (1-3) returns to action on Wednesday at Connecticut College, before heading to Smith College for three matches at the Smith Invitational next weekend.