Women’s volleyball cruises to fourth straight win

The women’s volleyball team won their fourth straight match in a 3-0 sweep of the University of New England on Saturday. 

The Lions started off the first set 6-0 and never trailed. Senior outside hitter Jessica Braunstein credited the team’s energy for their strong start. 

“Everyone was just really hype,” said Braunstein in a postgame interview. “There was a lot of energy in the gym, which was great.”

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The Lions used that momentum to dominate the rest of the set, leading by six or more points following their initial run. 

In the second set, UNE tied the game at 2-2 before the Lions scored nine straight points to give them an 11-2 lead. UNE went on a run to make the set competitive after the Lions stretched their lead to 23-10, but the Lions won the game 25-18.

UNE rallied in the third set and held as much as a seven-point lead. The Lions responded, tying the game at 16 before taking the lead and winning the set 25-20.

“We’ve been playing a little more consistent from start to finish against some of these teams,” head coach Ben Read said in a postgame interview.

Coming into the match, UNE held a 14-2 record, but Read said the Nor’Easters played a lower level of competition, which helped the Lions dominate. 

Read said the score allowed him to rotate players, and at points, the team played lineups of only freshmen. In total, 13 Lions received playing time. 

“I had people that play in positions that they really had barely practiced,” Read said. 

Saturday’s win was the team’s fourth in a row, and Braunstein, the team’s only senior, said the closeness of the team has led them to success. 

“It’s just a really good group,” Braunstein said. “We got really lucky.”

The win over UNE is the Lions’ fifteenth win of the year, equalling their win total from 2018. The Lions have seven more matches on their schedule, which will give them an opportunity to expand their win total before the New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference playoffs begin. 

On Oct. 22, the Lions will travel to Endicott College for a non-conference matchup at 7 p.m.

 

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