Springfield, Mass. - September 6, 2017 - The Springfield College women's volleyball team overcame a slow start to topple in-region foe Amherst College in a four-set non-conference victory in Blake Arena on Wednesday night. The Pride won by the set scores of 20-25, 25-21, 25-17, 25-13.
Springfield moved to 5-0 with the win, while the Mammoths lost their season opener to fall to 0-1.
Jen Donnelly (Exeter, R.I.) led all players with 14 kills to go along with nine digs, while Hayley Kmetz (Ardsley, N.Y.) chipped in nine kills and 12 digs of her own. Kayley Cimino (Cumberland, Maine) totaled 43 assists, six blocks, and six digs running the Pride's attack, and the backline duo of Anagabrielle Sanchez (Caguas, Puerto Rico) and Hannah Lozano (Stockton, Calif.) combined for 31 digs. In the middle, Camryn Bancroft (Eastport, N.Y.) and Laura Townsend (Willington, Conn.) produced a collective 15 kills and eight blocks.
The Mammoths took advantage of five early Springfield errors to take a 6-1 lead and force head coach Moira Long into a timeout. After falling behind by as many as six points, Springfield would climb within 11-9 when Donnelly capped off a lengthy rally with a roll-shot kill. Springfield would take its first lead at 13-12 following four-straight Amherst attack errors, but the visitors reeled off four-straight points as Springfield burned its final timeout. A kill from Bridget Walsh (Garrison, N.Y.) tied things at 19-all, only to have Amherst rattle off five-straight points to gain control en route to the 25-20 win.
Springfield earned a 4-3 lead in the early points of the second set before Amherst put together a 5-0 surge as the Pride called for a timeout. Springfield would grind their way back into the set, tying the frame at 14 after Donnelly ripped a kill off the block. Kayleigh Helgesen (Oceanside, Calif.) cracked a kill cross court to push the hosts advantage to 22-20, and out of an Amherst timeout, Lozano delivered consecutive aces for set point. Donnelly would later muscle the Pride's 16th kill of the set for the 25-21 win as it evened the match up.
It was the Pride who surged out to an early lead in the third, getting a solo stuff from Townsend at 9-2 as the Mammoths wasted little time calling timeout. Springfield pushed its cushion to 19-6 when Donnelly blasted a kill out of the back row, however Amherst would climb within 23-16 as Springfield signaled a timeout. The Pride would take the 25-17 win on a block from Townsend and Kmetz, a frame that was fueled by five kills from Donnelly.
A back-and-forth start the fourth saw Daniela Detore (Lake Grove, N.Y.) key another Springfield run from the service line as the hosts seized a 13-9 edge. Sanchez painted an ace for 17-11 and back-to-back kills from Kmetz later kickstarted an 8-0 scoring run by the Pride to complete the 25-13 victory.
Springfield will compete in the MIT Invitational this weekend, starting with a match at Endicott on Friday before taking on La Verne and Geneseo on Saturday in Cambridge.