The Seton Hall volleyball team will return home on Wednesday night as they host local Rival St. Johns at Walsh Gym at 7 p.m. The Pirates are fresh off a 3-1 win at Villanova, as they improved to 2-0 in The Big East and 12-3 overall. The Hall has won six straight matches and is looking to continue the early Big East success. SHU has lost just one set in two league matches. “It’s very important (to continue the success), playing St. Johns is a huge match,” head coach Allison Yaeger said. “It always is every year and it’s very likely that we go to five (sets) with them. They are a very similar team that we are and every Big East match is important especially home matches.”
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The Pirates have had great home success thus far as they are 7-1 inside of Walsh Gym. Seton Hall’s recent success has been headlined by star senior setter, Shelbey Manthorpe. Manthorpe registered her second straight triple-double in The Pirates win on Saturday night at Villanova and is looking to continue her success on Wednesday night. “I’ve gotten a lot of reps recently at practice and we have been starting to play games so I have had the chance to be more consistent, and as a whole are team has been getting more involved with a lot of better passes and everyone around me is making me look good,” Manthorpe said. “Our whole team is playing great.”
The Pirates are taking on a St. John’s team that is 12-6 overall but just 1-2 in Big East play. The Red Storm is led by junior outside hitter Karin Palgutova, who has been a dominant force up front. Palgutova and senior outside hitter Aleksandra Wachowicz have combined to make a great duo and have created great success on the offensive side of the ball for the Red Storm.
The Pirates are looking to set the tone early on Wednesday night. “It’s so important (to set the tone) because St. John’s is one of our biggest rivals and we are always neck and neck through the conference so I think the biggest thing is to get the momentum and be loud,” Manthorpe said. “If we’re loud they’re going to shut down.”
Alongside Shelbey Manthorpe will be her sister, Stacey, who registered 13 kills along with four assists on Saturday night at Villanova. Joining the Manthorpe twins will be sophomore libero Tessa Fournier, and freshman Sarah Kenneweg, who has been remarkable for The Pirates thus far. Kenneweg is playing her first career match against The Red Storm on Wednesday night and is trying to stay focused on her play. “I’ve heard a lot about the team,” Kenneweg said. “From what all the girls say I am really pumped up to play in a local rivalry like this one.” “It’s a happy, positive attitude since we’ve been winning. I think all of us are more positive toward one another, and we are fired up to keep playing.”
Charlie Mule is a freshman writer for The Setonian and can be reached at Charles.firstname.lastname@example.org