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Women's Volleyball Grinds Out Three-Set Wins Over Colby-Sawyer and Montclair State

Tessa Smolinski Springfield/Colby-Sawyer Box Score

Springfield/Montclair State Box Score

Springfield, Mass. – October 5, 2012 - The Springfield College women's volleyball team grinded out a pair of three-set wins in the Tom Hay Invitational on Friday evening in Blake Arena. The Pride bested Colby-Sawyer, 25-22, 25-23, 25-12, before cruising by Montclair State, 25-13, 25-13, 25-12.

The win boosts the Pride's record to 16-3 as Springfield as now strung together nine-straight wins

Springfield 3, Colby-Sawyer 0
Tessa Smolinski led the way with 11 kills and 14 digs in a hard-fought three-set win over the Chargers. Additionally, Mary Consol's added 10 kills and two blocks. Daniella Crismani notched 14 digs and seven kills, and Amy Entel added 12 digs and two aces.

Colby-Sawyer benefited from eight kills and three blocks from Courtney O'Hara, and seven kills and three blocks from Emilee McBride. Laura Smolinski, Tessa's younger sister, dished out 27 assists to go along with eight digs. The Chargers defense was anchored all night by the strong play of Ally Le_Bruno, who was credited with 22 digs.

In the opening set, Springfield used an early 6-0 spurt to take an 9-3 cushion thanks to the strong serving of Lindsay Runge. However, the Chargers battled back to 17-15 after a cross-court kill from O’Hara, forcing the Pride into a timeout. Springfield was able to grow its lead to 20-16 after another Runge ace, only to have the Chargers go on a 3-0 burst to get within one. Springfield was eventually sparked by a solo stuff from Kelsey McGayhey and a big swing from Smolinski, to take the opening set 25-22.

Despite a sluggish start to the second, Springfield benefited from four early Colby-Sawyer service errors to find themselves tied at 10-all. In a set that featured 12 ties and six lead changes, Springfield’s 21-18 lead evaporated after another O’Hara kill evened things at 22. Crismani responded with a pair of kills and Consol finished things off with a kill out of the middle to take the set, 25-23.

After a kill from Stephanie Vecchio brought the visitors within four at 11-7 in the third, the Pride poured on a 9-0 run, capped off by a Clare Henry ace to take a commanding 20-7 lead. Springfield finally found its offensive rhythm, totaling 14 kills at a .343 clip in the set, and Smolinski finished things off with her 11th kill of the evening to complete the Pride's sweep.

Springfield 3, Montclair State 0
The Pride had an easier time against the visiting Red Hawks as it controlled the match from the opening whistle. Smolinski produced 12 kills at a .379 clip to go along with nine digs, while both Elise Brogan and Crismani tallied eight kills each. Brogan led the sqaud with four blocks and Entel notched a team-best 14 digs. Runge once again made the most of her attempts from the service line, connecting for five aces. Molly Giannattasio had a very solid performance, totaling 29 assists, six digs, three kills, and a pair of blocks.

Montclair State was limited to just a .021 hitting percentage in the match. Marta Topor led the team with six kills, and Daniella Salemo chipped in with four kills. Kaitlyn Irwin was stellar on defense, leading the Red Hawks with a match-best 15 digs. Angela Campo finished the match with 13 assists.

Springfield controlled the first set, hitting .407 as a team. After trading the first four points, the Pride opened up an 8-3 advantage on a Brogan kill. Springfield continued to push the tempo and soon gained a 17-8 lead on another Smolinski kill. McGayhey closed out the frame with her third kill of the night in a 25-13 win.

In the second, Montclair State got within 11-10, however, the Pride toughed out three long rally's in a row to take a 14-10 advantage, forcing the Red Hawks into a timeout. Things didn’t get better out of the break for the visitors as Springfield extended its lead to 22-11. Smolinski led the way in the frame with five kills, while Montclair State was limited to a -.047 hitting percentage.

In the third, Springfield raced out to an 11-3 lead, connecting for 6 kills on their first 11 attempts, and the Red Hawks would burn their final timeout of the evening at 19-7 after Consol connected on a big swing in transition. Hitting .360 in the frame, Springfield's second three-set sweep of the night was completed by a Montclair State service error.

Tom Hay Invitational
Friday, October 5
Springfield 3, Colby-Sawyer 0 (25-22, 25-23, 25-12)
New Paltz 3, Westfield State 0 (25-20, 25-22, 25-18)
Springfield 3, Montclair State 0 (25-13, 25-13, 25-12)
Plymouth State 3, Westfield State (25-22, 25-22, 25-23)

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Head Coach Moira Long Moira Long will enter her third season as head women's volleyball coach in the fall of 2013. Long has wasted little time putting her stamp on the program, taking the Pride to consecutive trips to the NCAA Championships, including the Elite Eight in 2011. Read more.

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