BOSTON, Mass- The Wentworth women's volleyball team extended its win streak to 14 straight games with a 3-1 Commonwealth Coast Conference victory over Western New England University on Wednesday evening inside Tansey Gymnasium.
With the win, the Leopards improve to 20 wins with just two losses, hitting the 20-win mark for the third straight season. Wentworth remains undefeated against league opponents for a program-best 6-0 conference record.
Senior Lillie Clark (Vista, Calif.) steered the Leopards to an early 9-3 lead in the first set with a pair of service aces, before three WNE miscues and an ace from sophomore Makenna Salsbury (Bel Air, Md.) set the score at 13-6. Western New England played solid defense and rattled off four straight points – including three consecutive kills from junior Ashley Matthews (Salem, N.H.) – to pull within two 11-13, but the Leopards stayed out in front as a kill from junior Claire Quick (Mission Viejo, Calif.) kept a three-point lead, 16-13. Toni Fiore (Yorktown Heights, N.Y.) and Abigail Bundy (Lebanon, Conn.) deadlocked the set 16-16, but Wentworth closed the set on a 9-0 run highlighted by two aces from freshman Mary Zlotosch (Durham, N.H.).
Western New England took control early in the second frame and hit .333 as a team to take a set from Wentworth for the first time since September 17th. Junior Cassandra Holmes (Ellington, Conn.) led the Golden Bears in the frame with five of WNE's 13 kills.
Both teams battled in the third set, with Wentworth holding a narrow 12-10 advantage in kills led by junior Leah Rogoz (Woodridge, Ill.) with four. A Salsbury ace set the Leopards out 10-6, before the hosts grabbed a six-point lead after a bad set from WNE. Matthews ripped three swings to cut the deficit in half 16-13, but the Leopards held off any sort of comeback for the 2-1 match lead.
Paced by a match-best .333 hitting in the fourth, Wentworth crawled back from a 4-7 deficit with five unanswered points and three straight kills from Quick to steal the lead 9-7. Western New England tied the set at 10-10 and again at 11-11 before a hefty 8-1 run gave Wentworth a 19-12 advantage. Western New England battled late in the set but could not overcome a four-point deficit, as a final kill from Rogoz sent the Golden Bears packing.
Quick led the Leopards with 16 kills (.213) and 15 digs for her sixth double-double of the season, while classmate Rogoz contributed with her 13th double-double of 2018 with 12 kills and 18 digs with two service aces. Clark continued to dominate the serve with five aces in her 13th straight game with at least one service ace. Clark is ranked third among CCC opponents with 39 service aces this season.
Defensively, junior Lexie Cambray led all players on the court with 19 digs while juniors Maddy Tomastik (Portland, Ore.) and Katie Clouse (Hudson Falls, N.Y.) dished out 17 and 15 assists, respectively.
Western New England saw just one player reached double-digits in the kills column, as Matthews swung into 16 on .283 hitting. Holmes was next-closest to Matthews with eight kills, while Jenna McCormack (Nashua, N.H.) registered a match-high 38 assists. In a solid defensive effort, three players recorded 10 digs or more, led by sophomore Jenna Ferguson (Ellington, Conn.) with 18. Matthews had 17 digs of her own for her fifth double-double.
For the latest on Wentworth Athletics, follow the Leopards via social media on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. Fans can also download the Wentworth Leopards "Front Row" mobile app, powered by PrestoSports, on iTunes and the Android Market.