Alker Leads University of Delaware Volleyball Team To Dramatic 3-2 Victory Over Northeastern
October 19, 2012
File Photo Courtesy of Mark Campbell
NEWARK, Del. -- UD senior outside hitter Alissa Alker led the Blue Hens with 21 kills and 26 digs as the University of Delaware volleyball team continued its hot streak with a dramatic 3-2 comeback victory over Northeastern Friday night at the Bob Carpenter Center.
The Blue Hens, who have now won eight of their last nine matches, won by set scores of 26-28, 25-19, 20-25, 25-17, and 15-10. Delaware, which defeated Northeastern for the ninth consecutive meeting, improved to 11-12 overall and 5-2 in the Colonial Athletic Association. The Huskies, who were riding a nine-match winning streak and had not lost since September 14, fell to 17-4 overall and 6-1 in league play.
Towson leads the CAA standings with a 7-0 mark, while Northeastern sits in second place and the Blue Hens are in sole possession of third place.
With her 21 kills on the night, Alker (at right) now has 1,244 kills for her career, moving her into 10th place on the UD career kills list. Additionally her 26 digs are the second highest total of her career, while she also added six blocks on the night. Alker moved into eighth place on the Delaware career blocks chart, and also surpassed the 500-digs plateau.
Blue Hen junior Katie Hank added 11 kills against just two attack errors, as she hit .220 for the match and reached the 600-kill mark for her career. Freshman Katie Hillman also had 11 kills for the Blue Hens, while Chelsea Lawrence chipped in with 10.
Chandler Bryant posted a career-high eight blocks while Alker had six and Hank added four, as Delaware enjoyed a 14-6 block advantage over the Huskies. Freshman setter Mackenzie Olsen handed out 47 assists to go with 15 digs, while classmate Ariel Shonk added 24 digs and Kori Reigel contributed 13.
Kelly Bacon led the Huskies with 20 kills and 18 digs, while Jillian Briner and Nichole Kurz each had 13 kills on the night. Natalia Skiba posted a match-high 31 digs, while Janelle Tucker had 17. Ina Kamenova posted a double-double with 35 assists and 10 digs for Northeastern, which entered the night leading the CAA in opponents’ hitting percentage but allowed Delaware to hit .176 during the match.
Northeastern jumped out to a 5-1 lead in the opening set, but Delaware would pull even at 5-5 and the set remained tight the rest of the way. The teams were tied at 26-26 before a kill by Bacon and an attack error by Lawrence gave the Huskies the one-game lead.
After the second set was knotted at 8-8 early on, Delaware scored six of the next seven points and would not trail from there. The UD advantage grew to as much as seven, before a kill from Alker knotted the match at one set apiece. The Blue Hens led 12-7 in the third set, but Northeastern countered with a 7-2 run to pull even at 14-14. The teams were still tied at 17-17 but the Huskies recorded three consecutive points to pull ahead for good, eventually taking the set on a Hillman attack error.
The Blue Hens would not go away, however, using a four-point spurt to forge out to a 15-11 lead in the fourth set. The Huskies eventually closed within 18-16, but Delaware then scored six straight points to extend the margin to 24-16. Kurz ended the run with a kill, but Hillman immediately answered with a kill of her own to push the match to a deciding set.
Delaware wasted little time taking control in the fifth set, jumping out to a 6-2 lead and forcing a Northeastern timeout. The margin eventually grew to 11-4, and after the Huskies pulled within 14-10, Hillman delivered an emphatic kill to end the match.
The Blue Hens remain home for another significant league match on Saturday when Delaware hosts Hofstra at 8 p.m. at the Bob Carpenter Center.
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