NEWARK, Del. - - West Chester had the final rally in a back-and-forth five set match against the Wilmington University volleyball team, taking the match, 3-2, on Thursday night at the WU Athletics Complex.
Set scores for the Wildcats were 25-16, 11-25, 26-28 25-14, and 14-16.
After a slow start to the first set, the Wildcats went on a 15-3 run to take control of the game, leading 18-11. The Golden Rams (7-3) got as close as 19-15, but then the Wildcats scored three straight, and then the final three points of the game to take the set, 25-16.
West Chester came out firing in the second set, opening the game on an 11-3 run. Another five-point run gave the Rams an 18-6 lead before four more points gave the visitors set point, 24-9. A kill tied the match, 25-11.
The Wildcats led 10-9 in the third set, but then a 4-0 run by West Chester put the visitors ahead, 13-10. A Kill from Dorie Moore started a 4-0 run to give the Wildcats an 18-17 lead. The run continued, all told being an 8-2 run to give the Wildcats a 22-19 lead. But back came the Golden Rams, scoring four straight of their own to lead 23-22. The Wildcats earned set point, 24-23, but couldn't convert and the set continued to go back and forth. Mandy Behiels put down a kill to tie the set, 26-26, but the Golden Rams were able to score back-to-back points to lead the match, 2-1, with a 28-26 set win.
The Wildcats weren't going away, however, racing out to a 7-2 lead in the fourth set. The wildcats used a 7-1 run to lead 16-7 and continued to push with another 6-1 spurt to lead 22-9. The Golden Rams saved four set points but Mandy Behiels finally put the game away with a kill, 25-14.
Wilmington jumped out to a 5-3 lead in the fifth and deciding set before the Golden Rams scored four straight to lead 7-5. West Chester led 13-10 but the Wildcats wouldn't roll over yet again, getting kills from Angel Oliver and Mandy Behiels before a ball handling error tied the set, 13-13. The Wildcats saved a match point, 14-14, but a kill and a Wildcat error ended the match in favor of West Chester, 16-14.
The Wildcats collected 13 blocks in the match, outhitting the Rams, .165 to .124. Angel Oliver led the charge at the net with eight block assists and one solo block (five total) to go with 13 kills while hitting .258. Mandy Behiels ended with 17 kills while Dorie Morre hit .350 with nine kills. Heather Pedrick dished out 26 assists and added 18 digs while Katie Bushong had 18 assists and 15 digs. Jessica Connelly collected a season high 16 digs while Elly Collins led the back row with 19 digs.
The Wildcats return to Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference action with their next match, welcoming Goldey-Beacom to the WU Athletics Complex on Saturday to start 2021 Virtual Homecoming. The first serve is set for 11:00 a.m. on Saturday morning.