Warren and Manthorpes lead sweep of Tigers in volleyball home opener
The volleyball team won their home opener on Wednesday night in straight sets, defeating Princeton 3-0 in Walsh Gymnasium.
The Pirates were very consistent, winning each set by similar margins. They won the first set 25-19, the second set 25-19 and the third set 25-20.
Redshirt sophomore Simona Sekulova led the charge with 10 kills. Stacey Manthorpe, who was named to this week’s Big East Weekly Honor Roll, had nine kills and her sister Shelbey had eight. Junior libero Alyssa Warren led the team in digs with 20.
The game started with each team going back and forth. The first 11 points alternated before the Tigers scored back to back points to take a 7-5 lead. The Pirates quickly countered with a 7-3 run that started off with a four unanswered points.
The game then went back to trading points, including back to back 5-0 runs by both teams. Seton Hall finally put the set away with a 5-0 run to win the set, 25-19.
The second set started with countering 3-0 runs. Seton Hall then went on a 5-1 run, forcing a Princeton timeout with the Pirates leading 8-4. Following the timeout, the two teams traded points before the Pirates went on a 5-3 run, capped off by a Kalie Marshall ace.
Princeton was forced to use their second timeout, following the Hall’s 4-1 run. After the timeout, Princeton tried to get back some momentum, going on a 7-3 run but the Pirates took control again and finished the set with a 3-1 run.
The third set started with the Pirates going on a 11-4 run, forcing Princeton to use a timeout. That timeout gave the Tigers a boost, as they came out and reduced the Pirates’ lead to two. The lead remained around two points for most of the set, with the Pirates always keeping the Tigers at bay.
The Tigers would reduce the lead to one with a 7-3 run, making it 21-20, but that was as far as the Pirates would let them get, as they went on a 4-0 run to end the set and the match.
This game, especially the third set, showed the resiliency of the team, which is something head coach Allison Yaeger has seen in the team all year.
“A lot of games this year we’ve actually been down by a couple of points and there have been times when we’ve been down by five or we’ve been down by six and we’re able to come back and really stay focused and finish out the game, which is unbelievable to me,” Yaeger said. “It’s surprising to me, and happy for me for this group that we know we can do that because every time from now on when we’re down by a couple of points here or there we know we’ve done it in the past, we know we can come back, so we have that confidence.”
The volleyball team resumes play on Friday when they face Stony Brook in the first game of the Seton Hall Invitational.
Brandon.Biskobing can be reached at Brandon.Biskobing@student.shu.edu