BRIDGEWATER, Mass. – The Bridgewater State University women's volleyball team swept visiting Fitchburg State University, 3-0 (25-12, 25-16, 25-18), in the Massachusetts State Collegiate Athletic Conference (MASCAC) opener for both teams on Tuesday evening at the Tinsley Center.
The host Bears improve to 1-2 on the young season and 1-0 in the MASCAC with the win, while the Falcons fall to 1-6 overall and 0-1 in conference play. The victory also marked the first in the collegiate coaching career of BSU rookie head coach Richie Gomes Jr..
Senior outside hitter Kayla Baril (Seekonk, Mass.) paced Bridgewater State with six kills, four assists, a match-high five aces and eight digs. Baril recorded four straight aces to serve out the first set. Freshman right side hitter Rebecca Whalen (Plymouth, Mass.), sophomore right side hitter Alexis Duarte (Fairhaven, Mass.) and senior middle hitter Grace Stafford (Yarmouth, Mass.) also recorded six kills apiece for the Bears, while junior middle hitter Erin Clifford (Hanson, Mass.) notched five kills in a balanced offensive attack.
Bridgewater registered 14 aces in the match led by Baril's five. Senior middle hitter Elizabeth Roberts (Swansea, Mass.) and sophomore setter Casey Holmes (Norton, Mass.) tallied three apiece while sophomore middle hitter Sydney Rice (Medway, Mass.) notched a pair. Holmes also dished out a match-high 14 assists to go along with five digs. Sophomore defensive specialist Abigail Gardner (Holden, Mass.) checked in with a match-best 12 digs.
The Bears finished with a .284 hitting percentage, while the Falcons had nearly as many kills (16) as attacking errors (15). The closest set was the final one when the Bears were forced to battle back from an 11-5 deficit.
Sophomore outside hitter Paige Anderson (Winchendon, Mass.) paced Fitchburg State with six kills, three aces and five digs. Sophomore libero Jessica Pierce (Brentwood, N.H.) contributed a team-best nine digs.
The Bears host a tri-match with Wheaton College and Gordon College on Saturday starting at 11:00 AM. The Falcons travel to Colby-Sawyer College on Thursday for a seven o'clock match with the Chargers.