Volleyball off to best-ever start after two more sweeps

EAST STROUDSBURG, Pa. – The Saint Anselm College volleyball team swept both Molloy and Nyack to start a season 4-0 for the first time ever on Friday at Koehler Fieldhouse.

The pair of sweeps gave the Hawks their best-ever start to the season, surpassing the 2012 team that started 3-0. All four of Saint Anselm's wins are sweeps, as the team is yet to drop a set this season.

Saint Anselm 3, Molloy 0 | Box

In the opener, Saint Anselm (4-0) was pushed in the first and third sets by Molloy (0-7) but prevailed for a 27-25, 25-20, 27-25 victory to match the 2012 team's 3-0 start.

Amanda Williams tallied a season-high 11 kills and hit .304 to lead the Saint Anselm, while Madison Sollows and Sarah Lowery each added seven kills. Amanda Bickford chipped in with six kills for the Hawks, who hit .169 and held the Lions to a .099 clip.

Reigning Northeast-10 Conference Setter of the Week Riley Grussing recorded 28 assists with Jewel Hays contributing a dozen. Defensively, CC Chrisom's 15 digs led all players in the match.

In addition to her seven kills, Sollows made seven digs and four block assists. Lowery and Gianna Bowman posted eight digs each for the Hawks.

Shannon Wren led the Lions with 11 kills and Sophia Smith tallied a double-double of 18 assists and 14 digs, while also being in on four block assists.

Saint Anselm 3, Nyack 0 | Box

In the nightcap, Saint Anselm hit a blistering .403, its highest in at least six seasons, and held Nyack (4-1) to a .083 percentage to make it four wins from four matches to begin 2016.

Williams again led the Hawks' offense, tallying eight kills and one just one error on 13 swings for a .538 attack percentage. She led a balanced offensive attack that featured five players with between five and eight kills.

Freshman Catherine McCarthy posted a career-high seven kills, Brennah Gladwill had six kills on seven attempts and Katy Teets and Lowery each added five kills. Jewel Hays handed out 24 assists in the center of the efficient offense.

Saint Anselm hit .536 in the opening set and .433 in the second before cooling off to .158 in the third set. However, the Hawks held Nyack to a -.200 attack percentage in the third to finish off the sweep.

Chrisom's eight kills again led the Hawks, while Danielle Isbell notched six and Lowery five.

Lindsay Miller had seven of Nyack's 25 kills, Olivia Denny tallied 16 assists and Kelsi Collins dug a match-high 14 balls for the Warriors.

Saint Anselm looks to extend its record start when it faces West Liberty and host East Stroudsburg on the final day of the tournament on Saturday, Sept. 10. The Hawks play the Hilltoppers at 10 a.m. and the Warriors at noon.

Stay up-to-date with the latest news, including game previews and recaps, directly from the Saint Anselm College athletic department by liking us on Facebook and following us on TwitterInstagram and Snapchat @STAHawks.