PLYMOUTH, N.H. -- Junior Alisha Flanagan (Milton, N.H.) notched a double-double effort of 13 kills, 18 digs and three set assists to lead Plymouth State to a 3-2 Little East Conference volleyball victory over UMass Dartmouth Saturday afternoon at Foley Gymnasium.
Junior Lex Bowers (Port St. Lucie, Fla.) added a double-double performance of 12 kills, 17 digs and three block assists in the triumph for the host Panthers (11-19, 3-5 LEC), who qualified for next week’s Little East championships as the sixth seed in the conference tournament. After dropping the opening set to the visiting Corsairs (9-17, 1-7 LEC) by a 25-17 margin, Plymouth State took the next two sets (28-26 & 25-17) before UMass Dartmouth forced the deciding frame with a 25-23 fourth set win. The visitors jumped out to a 7-4 fifth set lead before the hosts evened matters at 10-10, as Flanagan recorded a pair of kills to help the Panthers close out the contest with a 15-10 victory.
Sophomore Francie Shaffer (Frederick, Colo.) added nine kills in the win for Plymouth State, which received seven kills each from senior Ari Linden (Lena, Ill.) and junior Allie Rogers (Sandown, N.H.). Freshman Alexa Price (Moultonborough, N.H.) collected 37 set assists on the day for the Panthers, who received 10 digs from freshman Hannah Douglas (Rochester, N.H.).
Senior Kristy Walton (Fairhaven, Mass.) registered a match-high 16 kills in the setback for the Corsairs, who received a double-double effort of 10 kills, 14 digs and three set assists from fellow senior Amanda LaCroix (East Freetown, Mass.). Junior Nicole Silverman (Chelmsford, Mass.) chipped in with six kills, 11 digs and five service aces for UMass Dartmouth, which received four kills each from junior Samantha Sedano (Valley Glen, Calif.) and freshmen Mallory Singer (Succasunna, N.J.) and Molly Porch (New Hartford, Conn.). Junior Jordan Rittberger (Huntington, N.Y.) and sophomore Riley Thomas (Fairhaven, Mass.) combined for 36 set assists and 14 digs for the visitors, while junior Jillian Sykora (Waterford, Conn.) recorded 13 digs and four service aces.
Plymouth State will travel to third-seeded Keene State for quarterfinal round action of the 2018 Little East Championships on Tuesday evening, while Saturday’s contest marked the season finale for UMass Dartmouth.