BOSTON, Mass. - First year outside hitter Morgan Weeg (Goodyear, Ariz.) spiked for 21 kills and added 13 digs to lead the Simmons College women's volleyball team to a 3-2 (25-19, 25-22, 21-25, 23-25, 15-12) victory over host Emmanuel College in a Great Northeast Athletic Conference match this evening at the Jean Yawkey Center in Boston, Mass. The Sharks win their fourth straight match to improve to 8-9 overall and 5-2 in league play, while the Saints fall to 10-16 and 6-3.
Simmons fired 13 aces for the night, including multiple aces from four different players.
Weeg posted her 11th double-double of the season in addition to serving up a pair of aces and assisting on a block for the Sharks, while senior middle blocker Abby Hart (Westfield, Mass.) put down nine kills and added seven total blocks and a pair of digs. First year setter Kenna McCarthy (Shelter Island, N.Y.) set for 38 assists and served up a career-high four aces for the second straight match and added nine digs and a block assist. Senior libero Alex Itasaka (Bradford, Mass.) led all defenders with 33 digs. Senior outside hitter Kat Guillotte (New Bedford, Mass.) contributed with six kills, four aces and 17 digs.
Emmanuel was led by first year outside hitter Marissa Cataldo (Melrose, Mass.) with a double-double of 10 kills and 22 digs to go with an ace and a block, while sophomore outside hitter Mary Shelow (Miami, Fla.) swung for 10 kills, got up for 13 blocks and picked up three digs. senior outside hitter Cassie Chruscielski (Duluth, Minn.) chipped in with eight kills, 21 digs, two blocks and an ace and senior libero Sarah Schemerhorn (Los Angeles, Calif.) got down for 22 digs to go with an ace.
Simmons jumped out to a 12-4 lead in the opening set, led by three kills from Weeg. The Sharks maintained a 15-7 advantage, before the Saints came back with a 10-2 run to knot the set at 17-17. Simmons answered with three straight points as part of an 8-2 burst to close out the frame for the win.
The Sharks took an early 7-3 lead in set two, behind a pair of kills from first year middle blocker Allie Erk Thompson (Canton, Mass.), but an 8-2 stretch gave Emmanuel an 11-9 margin. The Saints later extended their lead to 19-15, but Simmons stormed back with a 10-3 burst to close out the set to take a 2-0 match lead. Hart spiked for three kills during the closing stretch for the Sharks.
The Saints showed life in the third set, taking the lead for good following a kill by Cataldo that gave the hosts a 7-6 advantage. They led by as many as seven in the set, coasting to a 25-21 win to put the match at 2-1.
In the fourth frame, the Sharks built a 17-13 lead following a Weeg kill before Emmanuel began to turn things around. The squads traded points to a 20-16 score before the Saints rattled off six consecutive points including five straight blocks to grab the lead and momentum. Chruscielski and Shelow each recorded multiple rejections during the run including four block assists and one solo block by Shelow to help EC pull ahead 22-20. Simmons fought back, tying the score at 23-23 with the help of a few errors from the hosts but back-to-back kills from freshman middle Shannon Carroll (Massapequa, N.Y.) and senior middle Kaitlyn Atkinson (Brookline, N.H.) sent the match to a fifth set.
Emmanuel raced out to a 7-4 lead in the final frame, getting some help from the visitors who made four attack errors in the early goings of the set. A Simmons timeout calmed the Sharks down and the squad responded by going on a 5-1 run to take a 9-8 lead after an Emmanuel attacking error. The Saints lost Shelow during the melee due to a knee injury at the net and were not able to get the ball down when they needed it the most. Simmons finished out the frame with a kill by Guillotte to take the set 15-12 and match, 3-2.
Simmons returns to the court on Saturday, October 22 with a tri-match in Nashua, N.H., facing off with Mount Ida College and host Rivier University, while Emmanuel returns to action on October20 when it heads to Emerson College for a 7:00 p.m. contest.