By Britney Dixon
The second seeded Roger Williams University women’s volleyball team was upset by the seventh seeded University of New England Nor’Easters on Tuesday night in the Commonwealth Coast Conference Quarterfinals game. UNE came prepared to dominate right out of the gate to perform a thrilling 3-1 victory.
In the first set, UNE took a quick 4-1 lead. However, Roger Williams fought back to keep a tight two point deficit for most of the remainder of the set. RWU suffered from an early 25-21 defeat, which shook the team and rattled their nerves. Most of UNE’s points came from service errors from the home team.
As usual, the Hawks came into the second set ready to retaliate against their opponent. They maintained a lead throughout the entire set to soar straight to a victory that would even the match and set the clock back to zero. This set win for RWU was offensively impressive, with almost half of their points coming from kills. Their defense worked evenly as they aggressively halted the Nor’Easters to 22 points in the set.
After tying up the match, both teams were eager to pull ahead. The score remained close, with each squad fighting to obtain the latter score. RWU kept a tight score, which led UNE to utilize a timeout to strategize and release the tension of the set. UNE was able to distance their lead enough to land a 2-1 lead on the match with their 25-23 third set win.
The fourth and final set was another hard-fought matchup amongst the two teams with a close score that kept the crowd active. The lead bounced back and forth throughout the set. Both teams utilized several timeouts to regroup and plan new attacks to pull together a win in hopes of continuing their season. RWU fell apart in the last few minutes of the game, suffering a 27-25 loss and the end of their 2016 season.
On Tuesday night, the leader board brought many different names. Sophomore Molly Quilty led the team with eleven kills, with freshmen Grace Kenningham and Lara Lolacono right behind her providing eight and six kills respectively. Junior Maria Batas, senior captain Kristen Boyer, and freshman Julia Fields were responsible for the team’s four aces of the evening.
Quilty, Lolacono, and senior Cassandra Minogue assisted the team on defense with 15 blocks during the match. Freshman Emiley Melillo and Fields provided the team with 33 assists to allow the team scoring opportunities. Boyer also provided one. Batas, Boyer, and senior Sarah McAniff worked hard on defense again in this game to give the team a total of 51 digs.
Out of her 93 sets played in the 2016 season, Boyer presented the team with 260 kills out of 886 attempts. Batas led the team by completing 43 service aces throughout this season. On defense, she also led the team with 406 digs. Fields helped the team remain in scoring position with 715 assists all season. Quilty was another leader for the team and tallied 32 solo blocks.
This season’s volleyball team landed four players on the All-CCC. Boyer and Quilty were awarded spots on the First Team, while Fields and Minogue were chosen to be on the Second Team. Boyer was also awarded the Senior Scholar Athlete award for all of her hard work throughout her four years as a Student Athlete at Roger Williams University.
The Hawks hope to keep up the high spirits next year without their graduating seniors, achieve their mini goals, and maintain their high rank in the Commonwealth Coast Conference.