University of Delaware Finishes Off Thrilling Rally vs. UNCW as Kenny Wins 200th Match for Blue Hens
October 5, 2012
File Photo Courtesy of Mark Campbell
WILMINGTON, N.C. -- University of Delaware women’s volleyball head coach Bonnie Kenny (at left in photo) will certainly remember her 200th career victory for the Blue Hens for more than just the milestone.
Not only did the Blue Hens help their mentor reach an impressive win plateau, they did so in thrilling fashion as the Blue Hens rallied from a two-set deficit to down host UNCW in the final three games and post the3-2 Colonial Athletic Association victory at Hanover Hall.
After falling 25-21 and 25-20 in the first two games, the Blue Hens (7-11, 2-1 CAA) came storming back with dominating wins of 25-18, 25-17, and 15-10 to secure the team’s fourth straight victory and second straight CAA triumph.
The host Seahawks (7-12, 0-4 CAA) lost their fourth straight match and fell to the Blue Hens for the 15th straight time since the 2003 season, Kenny’s second at the helm of the Blue Hens.
All-CAA senior hitter Alissa Alker led the way for the Hens once again as she posted a match-high 15 kills to go with 18 digs and four blocks. Katie Hank contributed 12 kills while Mackenzie Olsen dished out 41 assists and posted 11 digs and Ariel Shonk registered 29 digs. Senior Chelsea Lawrence contributed six kills, including the 500th of her career, and had a hand in 13 blocks, just two shy of the UD single match record and most for a UD player since Paige Erickson had 12 vs. James Madison in 2007.
Morgan Kline led UNCW with 14 kills and 19 digs while Sarah Fitzgerald added 13 kills and Victoria Phillips contributed 18 assists and 12 digs. The Seahawks hit just .050 for the match, including a mark of just .010 over the last three sets.
Kenny, a four-time CAA Coach of the Year who has led her teams to a share of five CAA titles and to four NCAA Tournament berths over the last five seasons, is now 200-134 in her 11th season at Delaware and 540-386 in her 29th season overall. She previously served as head coach at South Carolina and Massachusetts.
The Seahawks jumped out to 2-0 lead in sets thanks to wins of 25-21 and 25-20. The first set featured eight ties before the Seahawks went ahead for good by breaking a 16-16 deadlock with a 4-1 spurt that put them up for good. The second set was also a nail-biter as UNCW held off the Hens by scoring the final four points of the set after UD had pulled to within 21-19.
Delaware pulled away from an 11-11 deadlock in the third set by using a 5-1 run to take a 16-12 lead. UNCW never got closer than three the rest of the way as the Hens pulled away for a 25-18 victory. Delaware then knotted the match at 2-2 with a 23-17 win in the fourth game as the Hens jumped out to a 7-3 lead and never looked back. After UNCW pulled to within 19-17, the Hens reeled off the final six points to force the fifth and final game.
The Hens scored the first three points of the final set before UNCW followed with the next three. But the Hens took off from there, breaking the tie for good with three straight points and closing out the victory behind an Alker kill and a Hank service ace.
Delaware will continue its CAA southern swing Sunday when the Hens travel to Williamsburg to take on William & Mary at 2 p.m.
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