Blue Volleyball Grabs NEWMAC Win Over WPI; Falls to Rivier

Alex Berman Photography
Alex Berman Photography

WORCESTER, Mass. – Wellesley College volleyball split a pair of matches on Saturday at WPI's Harrington Auditorium. The Blue opened with a 3-1 (25-16, 25-22, 13-25, 25-23) New England Women's & Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) win over the host Engineers, before being setback 3-0 (25-19, 25-22, 25-12) by non-conference Rivier University.

The Blue improve to 3-1 in NEWMAC games and 9-6 overall following today's action. WPI falls to 10-3 (3-2 NEWMAC), while Rivier earned a pair of wins to improve to 13-1. The Raiders also defeated WPI in the day's third match, 3-0 (25-13, 25-22, 25-18).

Wellesley 3, WPI 1

Sophomore Yasmine Reece (New Rochelle, N.Y.) powered the Wellesley attack, hitting .341 with 18 kills to help the Blue to a 3-1 win over WPI. 

Wellesley first year Kennedy Ulfig (Saline, Mich.) recorded her second double-double in-a-row, racking up a match-high 18 digs and adding 10 kills. Classmate Meghan Shoop (Cypress, Calif.) added eight kills and eight digs, while sophomore Michelle Li (Scarsdale, N.Y.) dished out 38 assists to help key the Blue victory.

WPI senior Maddy Werth (Bedford, MA) tied Reece for match-high honors with 18 kills, hitting an incredible .556. Senior Cassandra Tomerlin (La Quinta, Calif.) was one of three WPI players to finish in double-figures on defense, totaling 16 kills, including the 1,000th of her career. Sophomores Casey Hunt (Granby, Conn.) and Azita Bakhtyari (Andover, Mass.) added 12 and 10 digs, respectively. 

The Blue opened with a 25-16 first set victory and followed that with a 25-22 second set win, before WPI got on the board with a resounding 25-13 third set win. However, the Blue held the hosts to just seven kills in the fourth game, closing out the fourth set with a 25-23 win when Ulfig put down the final point. 

Rivier 3, Wellesley 0

Wellesley hit just 152 as a team and could do little to slow down a consistent Rivier attack, as the Raiders earned their first victory of the day with a 3-0 win over the Blue.

Reece had eight kills, while Ulfig and Shoop chipped in with seven and six. Li added five kills to go along with 24 assists. Junior Alina Mota (Glendora, Calif.) had a team-high seven digs for the Blue, while Reece followed with six and a pair of block assists. 

For Rivier, seniors Dana Mott (Medway, Mass.) and Lauren Silverman (Chelmsford, Mass.) combined to hit .385 with 20 kills and two block assists. Each player finished with 10 kills.  Sophomore Kayley Macken (Clifton Park, N.Y.) set up the Rivier attack with a match-high 37 assists, while junior Bethany Trevino (Westminster, Colo.) totaled a match-high 15 digs.

Rivier never looked back following a 25-19 win in the opening set, adding a 25-22 win in the second, before closing out the Blue with a 25-12 win in the third. The Raiders recorded at least 15 kills in each set, capping the match with 17 kills on a .452 attack percentage in the final set.

Wellesley returns home to host Mount Holyoke in their next match on Tuesday, September 24, at 7:00 PM.