SPRINGFIELD, Mass. – Senior Jennifer Cain (Melrose, Mass.) posted one of her strongest matches of the season with 17 kills and 16 digs, but the Merrimack College women’s volleyball team lost by a 3-1 margin on Friday evening to American International at Butova Gymnasium in Northeast-10 Conference play.
Score: American International 3, Merrimack 1( 26-24 | 18-25 | 25-22 | 25-23)
Records: Merrimack (4-19, 2-6 NE-10) | American International (18-5 , 5-3 NE-10)
Location: Butova Gymnasium | Springfield, Mass.
How It Happened
- 1st set – The Yellow Jackets jumped out to a 9-5 lead, but Merrimack roared back with a 7-2 run to take 12-11 lead. The hosts answered with a 5-1 spurt of their own to take the lead back for good. With the Yellow Jackets at set point, 24-22, the Warriors won two straight points to extend the game. Senior Juliette McCall (Torrance, Calif.) struck a kill and junior Mary Kate McCarroll (Harrison, Ohio) won a point on a service. The Yellow Jackets rallied to win two straight and take a 1-0 lead
- 2nd set – Merrimack evened the match in the second set. Early on and facing a 4-3 deficit, Cain and freshmen Catherine Flaherty (North Andover, Mass.) and Julia Stewart (Melville, N.Y.) recorded three consecutive kills as part of a 4-0 run. With the Yellow Jackets up 13-12, the Warriors won 13 of the final 18 points to prevail. Stewart recorded consecutive aces during the set and Cain’s kill clinched the set
- 3rd set – The Warriors used a 6-1 run capped off by an ace from sophomore Amanda Cain (Melrose, Mass.) to take an early 7-6 lead. The Yellow Jackets used a 7-2 spurt to take control of the third frame for good, taking a 17-12 advantage at that point. The Navy and Gold staved off a pair of set points before the Yellow Jackets won, 25-22
- 4th set – Another back-and-forth frame ensued in the final set. With the score tied at 11-all, Merrimack won three straight points that included kills from Cain and McCall. Merrimack took a late lead, 20-19, following points from Cain and Stewart. The Warriors were two points away from forcing a fifth set at 23-22, but AIC ended the match on a 3-0 run to win, 25-23
Inside The Numbers
- Cain her best hitting match of the season. She finished with 17 kills on 44 attacks with only four errors, for a .295 hitting percentage. It’s her third double-double over the last four matches, and she’s finished with at least 16 digs in four of the last five
- Junior libero Christina Nye (Plaistow, N.H.) and senior setter Tara Stuhr (Huntington Beach, Calif.) each finished with strong nights. The former led the team with 19 digs while the latter totaled 39 assists to lead the squad
- Stewart compiled a stat line of eight kills, three service aces and 12 digs, totaling 11 points
- Three Yellow Jackets posted double-figure kill totals including a match-high 22 from Diva Rivas
Merrimack hosts Pace on Friday night at 7 p.m. from Hammel Court, beginning a three-match homestand that also features contests against Adelphi and Saint Anselm over a span of five days.