Elise Sage (Greenwood Village, CO) and Johanna Ovsenek (London, Ontario) each posted 14 kills and a hitting percentage over .400 as the Pioneers defeated Robert Morris 3-1 Sunday afternoon in the Pitt Center. Courtney Kidd-Kadlubek (Santa Barbara, CA) had a great performance setting up the Sacred Heart attack as the senior captain tallied a match high 52 assists. The win is the Pioneers 11th consecutive victory as SHU moves to 6-0 in the NEC and 7-0 at home.
Robert Morris (7-14, 4-2 NEC) used five blocks in the opening set, three from reigning NEC player of the week Hannah Veith, to come away with a 25-23 win in the opening frame. The Colonials held SHU to just a .051 hitting mark in the first set and built a late 23-18 advantage. But the Pioneers rallied to tighten the set at 23-22 after back-to-back kills from Sage. Veith gave RMU a set point with a kill on the next play and combined with Amanda Graham for the block to give the Colonials a 1-0 lead overall.
Sacred Heart (16-4, 6-0 NEC) did not trail in the second set and finished a 25-22 triumph to even the match at 1-1. The Pioneers built a 17-10 cushion only to see Robert Morris run off five straight points, forcing head coach Rob Machan to use a timeout. SHU responded off the bench with kills from Ashlyn Trimble (Temecula, CA) and Ovsenek to rebuild the lead. The set ended on a service error from Charla Drabant, one of the Colonials seven service errors of the afternoon.
Both sides had their best hitting performance of the day in a tight third set with the Pioneers hitting a match high .360. Sage gave the Pioneers a set point at 24-23 with a kill set up by Kidd-Kadlubek. However, a service error followed by a kill from Graham gave the Colonials a chance to go up 2-1 in the match at 25-24 in the third. Freshman Christina Bauch (Trabuco Canyon, CA) picked a good time for her only kill of the match to fend off the set point. Sacred Heart then pieced together a terrific touch kill from Mercado and a hard swinging put away from Ovsenek to take the third frame 27-25.
The fourth set remained tight as a Colonial kill from Addie Jennings brought the score to 15-15. The Pioneers then ran off four straight points, all on kills, to take the largest lead so far in the set. Megan Pulone (Diamond Bar, CA) came in late to serve and did her job well as SHU again ran off four points with her on the backline to go up 24-18. Trimble dropped in the last point of the match with an assist from freshman Dianis Mercado (Vega Baja, Puerto Rico), who also finished the afternoon with a match high 15 kills.
The women's volleyball team returns home this Thursday for a match with NJIT, game time is set for 6:00 pm.