The hot serving and long early runs allowed the Wilmington University volleyball team to sweep Holy Family, 3-0, in Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference action at the WU Athletics Complex on Friday night.
Set scores for the match were 25-16, 25-9, and 26-24.
Redshirt freshman Jessica Starr started the match off with seven straight points on her serve, getting an ace to put the team up 7-0 in the early going. Junior Shelby Henderson followed with four points on her serve, capping a 5-0 run to put the Wildcats (7-11, 4-2 CACC) ahead 12-1 in the first set.
The Wildcats held as large as a 17-3 lead before the Tigers (6-10, 4-2 CACC) started to come back. Although they scored 12 of the next 19 points, it was too little too late as Hannah Karas and Erin Bistany blocked a Tiger attack for the 25-16 first set win.
Henderson, Ales Siolos, and Starr powered the Wildcats to a 12-4 lead in the second set with their serves. Another string of four straight points, three of which came on Kasey Couch's serve, put the Wildcats ahead, 18-6, before Kaitlin DiGiacinto served the Wildcats to a 22-7 lead. Siolos gave the Wildcats a 23-8 lead before back-to-back kills from Allison Briley gave the Wildcats the 2-0 lead, 25-9.
In the tightest set of the even, the Wildcats had to fight off a late rally by the Tigers to earn the extra point victory. Tied at 9-9, Erin Bistany helped the Wildcats to a 14-9 lead with a pair of aces. But the Tigers battled back to within one at 17-16. A kill by Bistany and back-to-back attack errors by Holy Family gave the Wildcats match point, but the Tigers scored five straight points to tie the set, 24-24. DiGiacinto gave the Wildcats another match point and the home team took the victory with an attack error on Holy Family, 26-24.
Briley led the Wildcats with 10 kills, collecting a double-double with a team high 17 digs. DiGiacinto hit .389 on the night, collecting seven kills without an error on 18 swings. Bistany added seven kills on 13 swings, only committing two errors for a .385 attack percentage. As a team, the Wildcats hit .272 for the match, and a remarkable .500 attack percentage in the second set alone.
Siolos dished out 18 assists while Couch added 11 helpers on the night. Siolos and Henderson were the only other Wildcats with double digit digs, each collecting 11.
The Wildcats are back in action on Saturday afternoon when they welcome CACC North Division foe Caldwell to the WU Athletics Complex. The first serve is set for 12 p.m.