The Seton Hall Pirates volleyball team took both games of a doubleheader in the Blue Raider Bash on Friday, winning 3-1 against the Illinois State Redbirds and 3-0 against the Tennessee Tech Golden Eagles at the Alumni Memorial Gym in Murfreesboro, Tenn.
The Pirates started off strong against the Redbirds, winning the first set by a score of 25-18. With the set tied at 11, Seton Hall went on a 10-3 run to pull ahead of Illinois State, easily earning the victory. The Pirates dominated the second set, going on a 18-5 run to start. The Redbirds could not even the tide and lost their second consecutive set to Seton Hall by a score of 25-11.
Illinois State rebounded by winning 25-17 in the third set, capitalizing on Pirate errors and playing tenacious offense. The Pirates answered back in the fourth set by edging out a 25-20 victory to close out the match.
Sophomore Abby Thelen led the way for the Pirates with 20.5 points on 18 kills, seven digs and one assist. Senior Danielle Schroeder also performed well, with 11 points on 10 kills and three digs. Senior Tessa Fournier led the Pirates with 16 digs.
Seton Hall had a bit more trouble in their first match against Tennessee Tech. The Pirates led 10-6 early on, but the Golden Eagles battled back to draw the score even at 17. The two teams remained even until Seton Hall managed to score six straight points to pull ahead and close out a 25-21 victory. The Pirates, similar to their first game, decisively won the second set by a score of 25-7. The third set was a much closer affair, as neither team took a lead of more than four points. Down 22-20, Seton Hall managed to even the score at 24 before pulling ahead 28-26, earning their third and final set victory.
In the game, junior Dominique Mason led the Pirates with 14.5 points and 13 kills. Sophomore Cherise Hennigan had 10 kills of her own, while Fournier again led Seton Hall with 20 digs.
Seton Hall improves to 4-4 on the year, winning their fourth consecutive game, while Illinois State falls to 3-5 and Tennessee Tech falls to 4-4. The Pirates will resume action on Saturday, Sept. 9, when they close out the Blue Raider bash against Middle Tennessee State at 1 p.m. in the Alumni Memorial Gym in Murfreesboro, Tenn.
Matt Lapolla can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @MatthewLapolla.