The Seton Hall volleyball team defeated Villanova on Wednesday night in a gritty four-set match that allowed them to jump up in the standings and get back over .500.
The match started off in Villanova’s favor as the Wildcats jumped out to an early 9-3 lead in set one. The Pirates stormed back, however, to tie the set at 16, and from there, the teams went back and forth until both sides settled at 22. With the set hanging in the balance, Seton Hall scored three unanswered points to take the first set 25-22. Seton Hall capitalized on nine errors by Villanova in the opening set to gain the upper hand in the match.
The second set was controlled by the Pirates, despite the Wildcats giving them everything they could handle. Seton Hall’s 20 kills and two errors were answered by 15 kills and two errors from Villanova, but it was not enough for the visitors as the Hall took the set by a similar 25-22 score.
After the break, it was the Wildcats who came out in control, catching Seton Hall flat-footed and maintaining the lead throughout the set. The Pirates had their lowest amount of kills for any set in the match, as Villanova kept the pressure on to win the set 25-19.
The Wildcats maintained that intensity into the fourth set, taking a 13-8 lead over Seton Hall who continued to struggle following the break. With the lead slipping through their grasps, Seton Hall caught hold of it with a few crucial plays that ignited their intensity. The Pirates tied the set at 13 and eventually took a small lead. The battle continued all the way to the end, as Villanova came up with two match-point halting plays, but Seton Hall finally prevailed thereafter to win the set, 25-23.
Keith Egan can be reached at Keith.Egan@student.shu.edu or on Twitter @keith_egan10.