For the first time in program history, the Seton Hall Pirates women’s volleyball team knocked off Notre Dame 3-0.
Coming into tonight’s game, the Pirates were 0-19 against the Fighting Irish, however standout performances from freshman Cherise Hennigan and senior Amanda Hansen changed that once and for all.
“It was really awesome to do that for Coach Yaeger,” said Hennigan, who led the team with 13 kills. “It was really good with the crowd and everything. It was great to have that as our home opener.”
With this win, Seton Hall extends their home opener win streak to six.
Last weekend Hennigan was named to the UNLV All-Tournament team and she picked up right where she left off with 13 kills and a dig. She said that she is not doing anything different, “just playing her game,” and playing for the team. Seton Hall was also supported by freshman Grace Forren.
This season the Hall brought in seven new freshmen to the volleyball team so the performance of the young players will be critical to their success. Hennigan said she was very proud of the team’s success as a unit.
Throughout much of the first two sets the Pirates dominated and cruised to victory. They took the first set 25-12 and the second set 25-17, giving them a commanding 2-0 set lead.
After Seton Hall jumped out to an early lead again in the third set, Notre Dame was able to keep it close and fight back by playing their best volleyball of the night. The score was tied as late as 20-20 in the set. However, the play of the freshmen and support from upperclassman Hansen and Fournier helped the Pirates prevail to a 25-22 third-set win and the program’s first ever against the Fighting Irish as they open up this weekend’s Seton Hall Classic.
In the first two sets and late in the third set, the Hall used their athleticism and height to exploit Notre Dame’s weaknesses at the net. After the game Hennigan spoke about the Pirate’s domination of play at the net.
“In scouting we saw that they like to hit angle and tip and we were definitely prepared for it and we stuck to the game plan throughout, she said.”
The Pirates will continue their play in the Seton Hall Classic tomorrow as they host Hofstra and Temple in a double-header beginning at 10:00 a.m.
Matthew Rachek can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on twitter @matthewrachek.