Springfield, Mass. - October 18, 2011 - Senior Lauren Torvi totaled 15 kills at a .560 clip to go along with four blocks to lead the Springfield College women's volleyball team to a three-game sweep of visiting WPI in New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) play on Tuesday evening in Blake Arena. The Pride won with game scores of 25-16, 25-12, 25-21.
With the win, Springfield, which is currently ranked 20th in this week's AVCA National Poll, improves to 25-1, 6-1 in league action. The loss drops the Engineers to 16-7, 4-3.
The first game started off as a back-and-forth battle as both teams jockeyed for position with neither squad managing more than a two point lead. The Pride would eventually pull away with an eight point run off the serve of Meaghan Hart to take a 19-10 advantage. Springfield would finish the game with a 25-16 victory as Torvi racked up seven kills on nine attempts during the first stanza alone.
Smolinski would help Springfield dominate the second game, racking up five kills en route to a 25-12 win. After falling behind by five in the third set, WPI would rally to climb within one of the Pride, 12-11, only to have Springfield close out the game and the match, winning 25-21.
Tessa Smolinski contributed 10 kills, five digs and two service aces, while Hart would finish with 11 digs with one service ace. Kim Giaquinto added four kills and a service ace and classmate Itza Nieves led the Pride defense in racking 13 digs. Fellow senior Jenna Lebowitz added eight digs, while Molly Giannattasio set the table with 29 assists.
Elyssa Dorenfeld led a strong effort for WPI, filling up the stat line with eight kills, 11 digs and a solo block. Belinda Nwagbara added five kills while Holly Ganser collected five kills and three digs. Joan Porambo had a team-high 12 digs.
Springfield recognized its graduating senior class in a pregame ceremony in their final regular season home competition. Nieves, Lebowitz, Giaquinto, Hart and Torvi have compiled an incredible 115-18 record during their collegiate careers with the Pride, going 31-3 in NEWMAC conference play and reaching the NCAA Tournament twice.
Springfield will now prepare for a critical weekend of play in the Volleyball Hall of Fame Invitational. The Pride's first match will be on Friday with a showdown against Bowdoin at 7:00 pm at Smith College.