DOBBS FERRY, N.Y. - - Wilmington University sophomore setter dished out 62 assists against Mercy, but it wasn't enough as the Wildcats dropped their final two nonconference matches of the year, 3-1, to Southern New Hampshire, and 3-2 to host Mercy on Saturday afternoon inside Victory Hall Fitness Center.
Set scores for the match against Southern New Hampshire were 17-25, 25-13, 27-29, and 23-25.
Set scores for the match against Mercy were 25-23, 22-25, 29-27, 22-25, and 12-15.
Match vs. Southern New Hampshire:
All the stats favored the Wildcats (15-8) against the Penmen (10-8), but the end result saw the team from the Northeast 10 come out on top, 3-1.
It was a slow start to the match for the Wildcats, as the Penmen jumped out to a quick 6-0 lead in the first set. The Wildcats were only ever able to close the gap to as few as five, 18-13, as the Penmen jumped out early. The Wildcats did the opposite in the second set, turning a 1-1 second set into an 11-1 lead. They continue to push, leading 17-4 before trading points the rest of the way, tying the match at 1-1.
The Penmen led by three at multiple points in the third set, but the Wildcats fought back to tie the set, 21-21, and then fought off three set points to tie it again at 24-24. They were always fighting from behind in the extra points, saving three more set points before falling, 29-27. The Wildcats led 19-12 in the fourth set, looking to extend the game, but the Penmen came storming back, going on a 7-0 run to tie the match at 19-19. The Wildcats again led, 20-19, but another 3-0 spurt put SNHU up 22-20. The Wildcats closed to within 24-23, but the Penmen were able to finish it off, 25-23.
Bailey Andrews led the Wildcats with 17 kills while hitting .359 with only three errors. Mandy Behiels added 14 kills to go with eight digs while Rebecca Rawlinson chipped in with 11 kills and a .318 attack percentage. Sarah Couch dished out 46 assists while adding 13 digs and Elly Collins led the way with 28 digs.
Match vs. Mercy:
Sarah Couch set a new program record with 62 assists and the Wildcats held a 2-1 set lead against the Mavericks (9-14), but they couldn't close out the East Coast Conference foe, as they came back to win on their home court.
Once again, the stat sheet looked better on the Wildcats' side, as they picked up more kills (71-63), aces (8-7), digs (99-95), blocks (5-2), and points (84-72), but the final score would say otherwise.
With the match tied 1-1, the Wildcats got a kill from Mandy Behiels to take a 24-23 lead in the third set. But the Mavericks scored back-to-back point to earn their own set point, 25-24. Rebecca Rawlinson put down a kill before an attack error put the Wildcats back in control, 26-25. The set was tied two more times, before the Wildcats picked up back-to-back kills by Bailey Andrews to win the set, 29-27, and take a 2-1 lead.
The fourth set was tied at 10-10 before the Mavericks scored 10 of the next 15 points to take a 20-15 lead. The Wildcats got to within 21-18, and again three points at 23-20 and 24-21, getting as close as 24-22 before the Mavericks closed it out, 25-22, to force a fifth set.
Mercy jumped out to an 8-2 lead in the fifth, forcing the Wildcats into a timeout. The Wildcats began to claw out of the hole, getting to with 10-7 on a Behiels kill. The Mavericks scored three straight to take a 13-7 lead before an attack error gave the serve to Rawlinson. Andrews put down two kills before a Maverick error and an ace brought the Wildcats to within 13-12. But Mercy closed out the match with the final two points, 15-12.
Mandy Behiels led the Wildcats with 19 kills and 16 digs while Bailey Andrews put down 17 kills and hitting .412 with only three errors. Rebecca Rawlinson added 14 kills and three block assists while Angel Oliver chipped in with 13 kills.
The Wildcats return to Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference play for the rest of the year, beginning with Jefferson at home on Tuesday night. The first serve is set for 7:00 p.m. at the WU Athletics Complex.