PHILADELPHIA, Pa. - - The Wilmington University volleyball team didn't let a late set letdown in the opener keep them from winning their fifth straight, coming back to defeated Chestnut Hill, 3-1, in a Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference South Division matchup in Sorgenti Arena on Thursday night.
Set scores for the match were 24-26, 25-14, 25-20, and 25-21.
The Wildcats (10-7, 6-1) had two set points in the opening game, but the Griffins (2-10, 0-6 CACC) stormed back and scored the final four points of the game to steal a 26-24 win to take a 1-0 lead.
But that didn't sting long for the Wildcats, as they bounced back and scored 11 of the first 15 points in the second set. The Griffins went on a 5-2 run to get within 13-9, but the Wildcats got kills from Heather Pedrick and Jessica Connelly in a 4-0 run to regain a 17-9 lead. Another 6-1 run put the Wildcats ahead, 23-13, and then kills from Angel Oliver and Kaiya Medina tied the match, 1-1, with a 25-14 second set win.
The Wildcats held onto the momentum into the third set, taking an early 6-1 lead. Another 5-1 run put the Wildcats ahead, 11-4, but then the Griffins fought back, eventually taking leads of 15-14 and 16-15. Mandy Behiels put down back-to-back kills before a block from Dorie Moore and Kaiya Media and a Rianne Nickerson ace put the Wildcats ahead, 19-16. The Griffins hung around however, getting a kill to move to within 21-20. Jessica Connelly started a 4-0 run to end the set though, as the Wildcats got blocks from Oliver and Pedrick, and then Oliver and Connelly to give the Wildcats a 2-1 lead, 25-20.
Chestnut Hill opened the fourth set with a 9-5 lead, but then four points on a Mandy Behiels service run brought the Wildcats back. The set went back and forth with the Griffins scoring two in a row to tie the game, 18-18. Kills from Heather Pedrick and Dorie Moore gave the Wildcats a 20-18 lead and they never trailed again. Two kills from Pedrick and a third by Oliver pushed the lead to 23-19, and then the teams traded points to the final, as Kaiya Medina ended the match with a kill, 25-21.
Jessica Connelly set a new season high with 16 kills, committing only three errors on 37 swings for a .351 attack percentage. Heather Pedrick collected her fifth triple-double of the season, putting down 15 kills (while hitting .353), 22 assists, and 14 digs. Kaiya Media had nine kills while Mandy Behiels added eight kills. Katie Bushong dished out a season high 30 assists.
Defensively, Elly Collins got to 25 digs while Mandy Behiels added 19. Doore Moore had six block assists while Angel Oliver had two solo and four block assists. Kaiya Medina chipped in with five block assists as well.
The Wildcats step outside the CACC this weekend as they play a pair of NE10 opponents on Sunday afternoon. They start with American International at 1:00 p.m. and then play host Southern Connecticut State at 3:00 p.m.