ORANGEBURG, N.Y. - - The Wilmington University volleyball team won its fifth straight contest overall and third straight inside the Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference by edging out Dominican, 3-1, on the road on Saturday afternoon.
Set scores for the Wildcats were 25-22, 16-25, 27-25, and 25-14.
After slightly disappearing in the middle of the season, the block game is back for the Wildcats (17-10, 11-2 CACC) as they have now picked up 24, 18, and 20 block assists in their last three matches, respectively. Today, they out-blocked Dominican (6-16, 4-9 CACC), 11-5, overall and had 10 more digs, 72-62. They also added 11 points on aces in the match.
The Wildcats and Chargers were tied, 18-18, in the first set before a three-point run by the Wildcats gave them the lead for good. A kill from Katie Bushong, an Elly Collins ace, and a Heather Pedrick termination put the Wildcats ahead, 21-18. The teams then split points the rest of the set with a service error giving the Wildcats set point, 25-22.
With the Wildcats leading 13-11 in the second set, the Chargers used a 14-3 run to close out the game and even the match, 25-16.
The Wildcats were down 19-16 in the third set, but used an 8-2 spurt to gain set point, 24-21. But the Chargers did not roll over, saving three set points and even took a lead, 25-24. But a block by Angel Oliver and Heather Pedrick gave the ball back to Wilmington and a Charger error gave the visitors set point, 26-25. Heather Pedrick served an ace to take the lead, 2-1, with a 27-25 win in set three.
The Wildcats kept the momentum from the final three points of the third set into the fourth set, racing out to a 12-4 lead by scoring five straight points. Dominican would get as close as 18-9, but the Wildcats would trade two points for every Charger point, getting to 24-11. The Chargers held off the Wildcats for three match points, but Mandy Behiels put the Chargers away with a kill to win the match, 25-14.
Mandy Behiels led the Wildcats with 12 kills and 14 digs for her 13th double-double of the year. Jessica Connelly and Heather Pedrick finished with nine kills each while Pedrick dished out 16 assists and added 13 digs as well. Angel Oliver finished with seven kills and only one error for a .333 attack percentage while lead the charge at the net with eight block assists and one solo block. Katie Bushong dished out 14 assists while Elly Collins led the back row with 21 digs.
The Wildcats return to the CACC South Division for two midweek games next week, first when they travel to Jefferson on Tuesday night. The first serve is set for 6:00 p.m. in Philadelphia.