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The Mass Media

The Mass Media

The Mass Media

Women’s Volleyball

One of two on the road ain’t bad.

The women’s volleyball team of UMass Boston came up with a split of doubleheader on Saturday October 5, losing handily to host Wentworth Institute of Technology 3-0, but came away with an exciting 3-2 victory over Lasell College in a game that went down to the wire.

The Beacons brought a six-pack of players to their matches, led by co-captains Laurel Smith and Melissa Hales. The first set in the Wentworth game saw the momentum swing back and forth with each team grabbing small leads. UMB took their largest lead of the set when it went up 17-13, paced by the serving of freshman Stephanie Adams. However, Wentworth countered, scoring six of the next seven points for a 20-18 advantage.

With the game tied at 24 apiece, Wentworth surged ahead, taking a 28-25 lead that forced UMB coach Ken Goon to take a timeout. The Beacons fought off several attacks, displaying brilliant play to keep the ball alive on kill attempts by Wentworth players. Yet the effort came to not as the ball found the ground on the UMB side of the net, just out of the reach of a diving #10, giving Wentworth the first set 30-26.

In the second set, the Beacons found little success. UMB players missed fired on some kill attempts early on. Wentworth accumulated points in impressive fashion, going on three separate runs of 4-0, 5-0, and 7-0, capitalizing on a few Beacon mistakes. #13 of Wentworth took charge of the set, delivering a powerful spike into the middle of the UMB players. She then capped off the second set with a deceptive tip for a final score of 30-10 as Wentworth took a 2-0 game lead.

UMB improved their play markedly as the team headed out to an early 7-4 lead, eliminating many of the mistakes that plagued them in the second set. Wentworth regained its composure and went on a 10-4 run as it went up 17-11. However, the Beacons refused to fold and executed its set plays with precision, taking a slim one-point lead at 20-19.

The ball in play for extended periods of time appeared to benefit the Beacons as the team held several leads of four points late in the set, including one of 25-21. Wentworth showed its resolve by coming back to tie the game at 25. UMB took a timeout to defuse the momentum, but it did little to stave off defeat, as Wentworth captured the third set 30-26 to secure the victory.

After a half hour of rest, UMB took on its second opponent of the day, Lasell College. The Beacons had a wonderful start in the first set, jumping out ahead 11-4 backed by the solid play of Hales’s sets and serves. Smith stepped up her game with a ferocity not seen until then as UMB maintained its seven-point lead. However, Lasell roared back, cutting the deficit to a single point at 25-24. The teams battled each other to a standstill, but with UMB holding a slim 29-28, Adams sealed the set with an emphatic spike for the winner and a final of 30-28.

Both teams had staggering starts to the second set. However, Hales settled the Beacons down with her on-court leadership and net play. Yet, Lasell regained the momentum, coming out ahead on lengthy exchanges for a six-point lead at 20-14.

UMB stormed back with six consecutive points to tie the game at 20. Lasell stemmed the onslaught and sprung to a 29-24 lead. Yet the never say die attitude of the Beacons surfaced as Adams recorded back to back aces to trim the Lasell lead to one. A change up serve by Adams and a soft Smith tip gave the Beacons the lead. A Lasell kill attempt went into the net, giving UMB the set 31-29 and a 2-0 lead in the match.

The next two sets saw little go the Beacons’ way, although Smith continued to excel in her play. Lasell warded off several clever attacks by UMB and raced to 16-9 lead in the third set. Luck changed a bit for the Beacons, but Lasell did not afford the opposition any opportunity for a comeback as it took the second set 30-20.

The fourth set saw UMB and Lasell exchange leads several teams, but UMB eventually took command going up by scores of 13-10 and 21-17. Hales, Smith, and Adams played exceptionally, but Lasell wore down the Beacons to tie the game at 24. Lasell took its first lead since early on in the fourth set 27-26 and capped the set off shortly after 30-28.

The Beacons found themselves in a position similar to the previous Saturday when it had a 2-0 lead, only to see the match tied up 2-2 and then go on to lose the fifth set. Smith led the charge with several kills and Hales contributed with a combination of tough digs and timely kills. Lasell managed to keep the set close and eventually take the lead at 10-7. Joyce Woods broke the Lasell momentum with an ace, followed shortly after by an important kill by Adams that was barely in on the back line for the last lead change at 13-12. Smith finished Lasell off when Hales gave her a perfect ball off a set for the final point of the game, giving the Beacons the 3-2 win.