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Women's Volleyball Battles Mount Holyoke in Season Opener

Women's Volleyball Battles Mount Holyoke in Season Opener

Kaleigh Anderson (@KaleighAnd1)

CHICOPEE, Mass. – The Elms College women's volleyball team fell to visiting Mount Holyoke College, 3-1 (25-14, 25-23, 25-20 & 25-16), in their 2015 season opener at Picknelly Arena Wednesday night. The Blazers drop to 0-1 overall, while the Lyons are off to a 1-0 start on the season.

Elms senior J.C. Pickett (Chicopee Mass.) lead the Blazers with 11 kills, while Mount Holyoke senior Emma Sweeting (Hastings-on-Hudson, N.Y.) dominated the floor collecting a total 14 kills with .242 hitting percentage on the night.  

The Lyons took the opening set 25-14 after junior Natalie Lyon (Oakton, Va.) assisted freshman Joy Maran (Santa Fe, N.M.) and freshman Isabell Linde (Red Bank, N.J.) in two consecutive kills aiding momentum for a team high 12 kills which paced the set. Capitalizing on six service errors, the Lyons pulled away from the Blazers sending them into the second with the advantage.

Elms struck back and tied things up winning the second set 25-23. Pickett started off strong for the Blazers earning them the first point of the set with a kill assisted from senior Shannon Bolton (Shelton, Conn.). Elms produced the first three numbers on the board until a service error sustained the Lyons game play. Nonetheless Elms continued to push back widening the gap with kills from Pickett and freshman Danielle Redding (Las Vegas, N.V.), putting the Blazers up by five. The Lyons tried to rally back were silenced after a kill from Moriarty sent the game into the third.

The Lyons started off the third set with a block from freshman Sarah Caggiano (Leonardtown, Md.) to set the pace. The Lyons later contributed a total of eight team kills, and took advantage of the Blazers nine service errors in the set. Sweeting closed out the third with a final kill assisted from Lyon to give the Lyons a 2-1 advantage into the fourth.

In the final set of the night an Elms attack error gave Mount Holyoke an early advantage, followed by three consecutive errors minutes later leaving the Lyons up 5-1 at the start. Sweeting led the set with six kills followed by Caggiano and Maran, who chipped in with one apiece to aid in the win.

Redding chipped in 10 kills on 20 attacks to help keep the Blazers on the board. Bolton fed Redding and Pickett all game long totaling 26 assists and 12 digs on the day. Senior Alex Mack (Wilbraham, Mass.) added 16 digs for Elms.

Maran contributed 11 kills and13 digs, while Linde and Caggiano each tallied five kills in the win.

"We saw a lot of great work to build off tonight," said Elms Head Coach Sheila Gisbrecht. "We also realize that we need to continue to work on our consistency and our creative on the court. We were pretty scrappy and did a good job of keeping the ball alive and frustrating their hitters, but I wish could've been a little more efficient in our passing. We have a great capacity to hit, there's more power than we've had  in a while, but we just need to work on that consistency and making the smart decision. As we grow and become more experienced, I feel it will be a devastating attack against other teams."

Elms is back in action on Friday afternoon as they will host the 2015 Elms College Invitational. The first game will start at 3:00pm.