MANCHESTER, N.H. – The fourth-seeded Saint Anselm College volleyball team got off to a strong start but fifth-seeded Adelphi University recovered from a one-set deficit to record a four-set (21-25, 26-24, 25-16, 27-25) victory in the quarterfinals of the 2016 Northeast-10 Volleyball Championship on Tuesday evening at Stoutenburgh Gymnasium.
Making its first postseason appearance since 2004 and hosting a playoff match for the first time in 20 years, Saint Anselm (20-8) hit .324 in the first set to take an early lead. However, two-time defending champion Adelphi (19-11) overcame late deficits in sets two and four to advance to the semifinals, where the Panthers will face eighth-seeded Pace after the Setters upset top-seeded Le Moyne in four sets.
Sarah Lowery and Amanda Williams led three Hawks in double figures in kills with 12 each, with Lowery hitting .370 and Williams an even .500. Catherine McCarthy logged 10 kills, while Madison Sollows and Brennah Gladwill had nine each. Jewel Hays recorded a double-double of 53 assists and 10 digs and CC Chrisom made 22 digs in the back.
Chrisom's 22 digs moved her into seventh in program history with 1,135 for her career, which is just one behind Kathleen McCarthy in sixth. Hays' 53 assists gave her 907 for the season and 1,650 for her career, figures that rank fourth and fifth, respectively, in the Saint Anselm record book.
Melissa Rigo tallied a match-high 20 kills, hit .308 and made 12 digs to lead the Panthers. Mandy Stanislovaitis also had a double-double of 10 kills and 10 digs. Megan Manierski handed out 38 assists and added 10 digs, five kills and four block assists. Sierra Cook registered 25 digs, four aces and four assists for Adelphi, which hit .253 and held a 12-3 advantage in blocks in the match.
Saint Anselm established a 13-8 lead midway through the first set after a 6-2 run that included three kills by Williams. The Hawks maintained the five-point advantage until Adelphi went on a 6-0 run to take its first lead of the match at 21-20. However, following a timeout, Saint Anselm won the final five points of the set to take the opener.
Adelphi's three-point lead on two occasions was the largest lead of the second set. The Panthers led 18-15 until a quick 3-0 run from the Hawks tied it on kills by Williams, McCarthy and Sollows. Later, Saint Anselm held set point after another Williams kill but Rigo erased it with one of her own as part of a 3-0 closing spurt for the Panthers, who evened the match at a set apiece.
Adelphi carried the momentum into the second set, opening up a 16-9 cushion with a 7-0 run. The Panthers led by at lead seven the rest of the set and hit .429 in the third, compared to .029 for the Hawks, to go up two sets to one.
Saint Anselm grabbed a 12-8 advantage in the fourth set with a 5-2 run and later led 18-12 following kills from Williams and Sollows. However, Adelphi mounted a late-set charge to earn a match point at 24-23. A Katy Teets kill kept the Hawks alive and an attack error saved another match point with Adelphi up 25-24 only for the Panthers to close out the match with kills from Katherine Ferris and Rigo.
Saint Anselm's 20 wins this season match the program record and the Hawks were ranked No. 10 in this week's regional rankings.
The field for the NCAA Tournament will be announced on Monday, Nov. 21 at 7:30 p.m. The show can be seen by clicking here.
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