SALEM, Mass. – Salem State hosted MCLA and the University of St. Joseph in a tri-meet at Twohig Gymnasium on Saturday afternoon. The Vikings opened up with a 3-0 win over MCLA, 25-18, 25-10 and 25-19 and followed up with a four-set win over St. Joseph (Conn.) 27-25, 21-25, 25-17 and 25-14 to go 2-0 on the day. The Blue Jays defeated the Trailblazers in four sets, 25-20, 25-23, 19-25 and 25-15 to finish 1-1 while MCLA ended the day 0-2.
Salem State 3 MCLA 0
Morgan Adams (Scotia, N.Y.) had seven assists as Salem State cruised to a 25-18 win in set one. The Vikings opened up a 23-9 lead after a kill by Alexandra Maloney (Bridgewater, Mass.). However, six straight points by MCLA off the serve of Beatrice Lechler (Point Lookout, N.Y) cut the deficit to 23-16. Two service errors committed by the Trailblazers sandwiched around a kill by Sara LaFreniere (Becket, Mass.) gave Salem State a seven-point victory. The Vikings won the second set 25-10 before completing the sweep, winning in the third set 25-19. MCLA led 9-7 after a kill by LaFreniere, but a 6-1 run gave the Vikings a 13-10 advantage after-back-to-back errors by the Trailblazers. A kill by Haley Reed (Goffstown, N.H.) pushed the Salem State lead to 20-15 before two kills by Emily Hennessey (Hanover, Mass.) gave the Vikings a 25-19 win.
Hennessey had eight kills and 12 digs to lead Salem State while Adams finished with 23 assists and nine digs. Samantha Chaisson (Duxbury, Mass.) contributed 11 digs. MCLA was topped by Lechler's nine assists and 11 digs. Celine Manigbas (Floral Park, N.Y.) had nine digs for the Trailblazers.
St. Joseph 3 MCLA 1
St. Joseph earned a 25-20 win in set one, racing out to a 17-10 lead. Trailing 19-12, MCLA pulled to within two points at 19-17 as Alyssa Keegan (Levittown, N.Y.) served on four straight points. However, the Blue Jays came back with a 5-0 run behind the serve of Aminah Tsonga (Plainville, Conn.) before winning 25-20. St. Joseph took the second set, 25-23 despite hitting -.086. The Trailblazers picked up a 25-19 win in set three as the Blue Jays once again struggled, hitting -.091 while making 12 errors. Back-to-back aces by Tessa Sestito (Corona, N.Y.) put MCLA up 19-15 as the Trailblazers held off St. Joseph for a six-point win. The Blue Jays rebounded with a 25-16 victory in set four, making just one error while hitting .400 with 13 kills. St. Joseph opened up a close set, scoring eight straight points off the serve of Nina Lestrund (Torrington, Mass.) for a 23-13 lead before winning 25-15 on a kill by Tsonga.
Torrie Epps (Windsor, Conn.), Lestrund and Hannah Benson (Teryville, Conn.) all had nine kills while Brenna Miller (McCleary, Wash.) had a game-high 29 assists for the Blue Jays. Janell Molina (Honolulu, Hawaii) and Miller each had five aces and 19 and 12 digs respectively.
Keegan had a team-high seven kills and 17 digs for MCLA while Sestito finished with 16 assists, 10 digs and five aces.
Salem State 3 St. Joseph 1
Salem State edged St. Joseph 25-23 in set one. The Vikings led 20-15, but the Blue Jays fought back as two attack errors and a kill by Lestrund pulled St. Joseph to within 23-20. Two aces by Tsonga helped tie the match and kills by Benson and another attack error gave the Blue Jays a 25-24 lead. Salem State was able to rally, as poor hitting by St. Joseph and a kill by Maddi O'Connor (Hamilton, Mass.) gave the Vikings a two-point win.
The Blue Jays came back with a 25-21 in set two despite Salem State racking up 16 kills on 35 attempts without an attack error. A kill by O'Connor gave the Vikings a 16-11 lead, but St. Joseph led by Tsonga, who had five kills in the second set, drew even at 19-19. Three aces by Molina put St. Joseph up 24-19, which won the set 25-21.
The Vikings took advantage of poor hitting (-.028) by the Blue Jays in the third set to pull out a 25-17 victory. Jasmine Severino (Lawrence, Mass.) and Brynn O'Neill (Danvers, Mass.) combined for nine kills as the Vikings opened up an 18-12 lead. A kill by Molina brought St. Joseph to within 20-17, but O'Connor helped the Vikings score the final four points of the game after an attack error by Lestrund for an eight-point win.
Salem State easily won the fourth set, as the Vikings raced out to a 17-5 lead, hitting .769 with 10 kills on 13 attempts. O'Neill and Severino combined for five of the kills. Trailing 23-8, the Blue Jays ran off five straight points off the serve of Lestrund before an error and kill by O'Neill ended the set by a score of 25-14.
Severino had 13 kills and O'Neill 11 while Hennessey added 10 kills and 13 digs. Chaisson racked up a career best 38 digs and Adams posted a career-high 44 assists.
Tsonga finished with 10 kills and 13 digs for the Blue Jays and Benson had six kills and 20 digs. Molina finished with 24 digs and Miller 30 assists.