Pine Manor hosted a tri-match on Saturday, October 9 as the Gators welcomed Rivier College and Simmons College for a pair of Great Northeast Athletic Conference contests.
Pine Manor began the day hoping to improve its GNAC record as they took on Rivier College in the first match. However, it was the Raiders who would move to 5-0 in conference play and 11-8 overall as they defeated Pine Manor, 3-0 (18-25, 12-25, 13-25).
The first set of day went back and forth before Rivier was able to pull away to capture the final points and control of the match with a 25-18 set victory. Pine Manor was paced by junior Jennifer Gross (Coral Springs, FL/Coral Glades) who had a match-high 6 kills, while freshman Imara Jackson (Malden, MA/Mystic Valley Charter) and sophomore Alie Johnston (Winnipeg, Manitoba/River East Collegiate) each contributed 3 kills. Jackson also led the Gators with 3 service aces. Freshman Ashley Carusone (Nashua,NH/Nasua North) led the Gator defense with 14 digs while sophomore Aponi Washington (Brockton, MA/Brockton) contributed 2 blocks.
After taking control at the end of the first set, Rivier captured the next two sets thanks to its balanced attack. Lauren Saccoccio (Warwick, RI/Toll Gate) tallied 21 set assists while Megan Dudek (W. Chesterfield, NH/Keene), Meghan Farrell (Marlborough, MA/Marlborough) and Kenna Finlayson (Derry, NH/Pinkerton Academy) all finished the match with 5 kills to lead Rivier.
In the second match of the day, Rivier continued its strong play as it defeated Simmons College by a 3-0 (25-18, 25-18, 25-16) margin. Finlayson powered the Raiders to the victory while posting a match-high 17 kills.
In the final match of the day, the Gator would return to take on Simmons College as both schools looked to secure a victory. However, it was the Sharks that would escape with a 3-0 decision (23-25,22-25,14-25). With the win, Simmons finished the day at 1-1 and captured its first GNAC victory of the season.
The first set of the match went down to the wire but it was Simmons that would capture the final two points of the match to escape with a 25-23 set victory. Both teams seemed determined to keep the ball from hitting the floor and it was a desperation dig that would give Simmons the last bit of momentum, allowing the Sharks to pull ahead and capture the first set.
In the second set, Pine Manor fought back. The Gators held the lead for the entire set before Simmons made a run and tied the score at 22-22. Once again, riding a wave of momentum Simmons would slip past the Gators, securing the set 25-22. Despite the efforts of freshman Megan Patch (Bethpage, TN/Red Boiling Springs) who set the pace for Pine Manor with 18 set assists to go along with 10 digs, the Gators found themselves behind 2 sets to none.
Having bested the Gators in the first two sets of the match, Simmons would secure the final set 25-14. Gross and Johnston would each finish with team-high 6 kills for Pine Manor, while Carusone contributed 5 kills as well as 16 digs.
Pine Manor drops to 6-8 overall following the weekend and 1-5 in conference play, but it will now turn its attention to Lesley University, as the Gators will host the Lynx Tuesday, October 12 at 7pm.
Posted on Sat, October 9, 2010
by Miles Roberts, Assistant Volleyball Coach