NORTH DARTMOUTH, Mass. -- The University of Massachusetts Dartmouth volleyball team fell to Keene State University and Wesleyan University on Saturday afternoon at the Tripp Athletic Center.
UMass Dartmouth falls to 7-20 on the year and 1-5 in the Little East Conference. Keene State earned two victories on the day and improved to an overall record of 19-12 and a 5-1 conference record. Wesleyan split their matches and moved to 8-13 on the season.
The Corsairs fell to the Owls in four sets 25-18, 25-18, 23-25 and 27-25 and were swept by the Cardinals 25-16, 25-23 and 25-22.
Upon losing the first two games, the Corsairs managed to rally past the Owls for a game three win. Taking advantage of the moment and feeding off the home crowd's energy, UMass Dartmouth jumped out to an 11-7 advantage to start game four. With the score even at 16 a piece, the Corsairs generated a 5-2 run and forced Keene State's coaching staff to burn their second timeout of the game. The brief break in action worked in the Owl's favor as it seemed to deplete the momentum of UMass Dartmouth and allowed Keene State's overpowering offense to solidify the match.
Top offensive contributors for the Corsairs were senior Tahirah Gibson (Norwood, Mass.) with a game-high 15 kills and sophomores Brianna Perry (New Bedford, Mass.) and Jasmine Burris (New Bedford, Mass.) with seven kills each. Freshman Christina Spinazola (Medway, Mass.) did a fine job distributing the ball as she dished out a game-high 26 assists. Perry and sophomore Carina Filosa (Milford, Mass.) recorded 23 and 17 digs while facing Keene State's hard-hitting attackers.
The Owls evenly spread offensive attack was highlighted by sophomore Madeline Nossif (Portsmouth, N.H.) with 12 kills. Alexis Michal (Windham, N.H.) and Brooke Bell (Melrose, Mass.) handed out 20 and 13 assists, while junior Sammy Dormio (Leesburg, Va.) led the team with 21 digs.
In game two on the day, Wesleyan outperformed the Corsairs and took the match in three sets.
For UMass Dartmouth, Perry recorded a team-high in kills and digs. The New Bedford native had nine kills and compiled 14 digs in the losing effort. Complimenting Perry were Gibson with seven kills and three blocks and Spinazola with 20 assists.
Wesleyan's setter Claire Larson recorded a game-high 34 assists as she continuously set beautiful balls for her teammates. Team captains Kim Farris (Atlanta, Ga.) Monica Leslie (Newton, Mass.) and Kate Centofanti (Cos Cob, Conn.) combined for a total of 31 of the team's 39 kills in the match.
The Corsairs hit the road on Tuesday for a non-conference match against Suffolk University.