The Sacred Heart University volleyball team dropped a 3-1 decision to visiting Lehigh University in its opening match of the 2017 SHU Hampton Inn by Hilton Shelton Invitational Friday night. The Pioneers fall to 4-7 on the year, while the Mountain Hawks improve to 7-5.
Makayla Dole posted a double-double with 11 kills and 14 digs. Julia Murawinski posted a match-high 13 kills, hitting .241, while Madi Pope recorded a match-best 19 digs. Kiki Robinson handed out 40 assists to go along with eight digs and three blocks. Rianna McNamee posted six block assists, with five from Murawinski.
SHU hit .138 for the evening, with a .258 hitting percentage in winning the second set, 25-16.
Lehigh captured the opening set 25-21, the third set, 25-22, and the final set 26-24. Lauren Bright and Ana Spangenberg both had nine kills to pace the team effort. Megan Polak finished with 24 assists and five kills and Emily Develle had a team-best 17 digs.
The tournament concludes on Saturday with four matches. Lehigh takes on Hartford at 10:00 am, followed by SHU and Brown at 12:30, Brown and Lehigh at 4:00 pm and SHU vs. Hartford at 6:30 pm. Hartford bested Brown 3-2 in the opening match of the tournament on Friday.
- SHU finished with 10 blocks on the night
- Lehigh recorded three solo blocks and 12 total for the evening
- Liisel Nelis had five of the Poineers eight service aces, while the Mountain Hawks had two, both from Polak
- Lehigh hit .304 in the opening set, turning a 21-20 edge into a 25-21 victory
- SHU jumped out to a 4-1 advantage, but scored just one of the next seven points as Lehigh took a 7-5 edge
- The Pioneers scored four of the next six points to tie the set, 9-9, but would not draw even the remainder of the way
- Lehigh led by as many as five, 16-11, leading to a SHU timeout
- The Pioneers scored four unanswered out of that timeout, closing to 16-15, and would be within a point, at 18-17, 20-19 and 21-20
- Dole had five kills in the opening set, with six digs from Pope
- After falling behind 2-0, the Pioneers went on a 6-1 run, to take a 6-3 advantage
- The Mountain Hawks rallied, tying the set at 7-7, before the Pioneers rattled off four straight points for an 11-7 edge
- After Lehigh closed to within two, 13-11, SHU again scored four straight and went on a 7-1 run to build a 20-12 advantage
- The Pioneers closed out the match with a service ace from Sydney Slevin
- Murawinski had four kills and no errors on nine attacks in the set, as SHU hit .258 for the set
- Dole added five digs and three kills
- The third set was tied seven times through 12-12, with neither team opening more than a three-point advantage
- Trailing 11-8, SHU scored four of five points to force the 12-12 tie, before Lehigh responded with four straight points and forced a Pioneer timeout
- That turned the momentum slightly to SHU, which battled back to 17-16, before back-to-back points from Lehigh made it 19-16
- A Mountain Hawk service error cut the deficit to two, 19-17, but SHU was unable to get any closer, falling 25-22
- SHU hit .114 in the set, while Lehigh hit .083
- Both squads had three blocks in the set
- The Pioneers again opened quickly, building a 3-1 lead, but Lehigh roared back to take a 5-4 advantage
- SHU answered with a 10-3 run, building a six-point advantage
- Lehigh scored the next three points and eight of the next 10 to tie the set, 16-16
- A Murawinski kill and a block by Gianna Scioletti and Dole made it 18-16, but against the Mountain Hawks rallied, tying the set 19-19
- Two Lehigh miscues gave SHU a 21-19 advantage, before Lehigh rallied to tie it again
- The set was tied at 21, 22, 23 and 24
- Spangenberg recorded a kill for Lehigh to make it 25-24 and she and Kelly Bennett combined on a block for the deciding point
- Lehigh hit just .067 in the final set, but had six blocks to earn the win
- SHU had 22 digs in the final set