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Volleyball Takes Down New Hampshire In Three Sets
Ali Loynachan led UMBC with 11 digs
BALTIMORE – Freshman Dalton Tolliver (Ortonville, Mich./Notre Dame Prep) notched a team-high 13 kills while junior Ali Loynachan (Whitby, Ontario, Canada/Sinclair) and senior Iman Kennedy (Charlotte, N.C./Independence) both added eight more as the UMBC volleyball team defeated New Hampshire in three sets by the scores of 26-24, 25-19, 25-20 Friday night at the RAC Arena.
With the win the Retrievers (14-11, 4-6 America East) pull into a tie with Hartford for fourth place in the conference. The Hawks travel to Stony Brook tonight to take on the Seawolves at 7 p.m.
Senior Ali Spaay (Kenosha, Wis./Kenosha Tremper) picked up 34 assists in the win, making this the 15th time this season she has recorded 30 or more assists in a match.
The win did not come easily for the Retrievers as they fell behind in both of the first two sets before rallying behind a strong all-around team effort.
“This was one of our most consistent efforts in the last several weeks,” said head coach Ian Blanchard. “Individually and as a team, the girls executed the game plan at a high level. They deserve a lot of credit.”
Down 14-11 in the first set, the Retrievers went on a 5-0 run capped off by a kill by freshman Hannah Schmidt (Catonsville, Md./Mount de Sales) to take the lead at 16-14. UNH fought right back however, and the two teams would trade points leading to 11 lead changes in the set. UMBC finally took set one 26-24 on a kill from Tolliver.
Faced with the same circumstances in the second set, the Retrievers responded in a similar fashion, this time using a 9-4 run to tie the set at 11. Again tied at 12, UMBC got two kills each from Tolliver, Loynachan, Kennedy and Schmidt to take the set 25-19.
In the final set, the two squads traded points before sophomore Emily Vandegrift (Leesburg, Va./Loudoun County) sparked the Retrievers to a 5-1 run with two kills. UMBC then salted away the match with a 25-20 win in the third.
“That first set was huge,” said Blanchard. “The girls developed confidence from there, and they know what they are capable of.”
UMBC hopes to gain some momentum from this win as Hartford comes calling next at the RAC Arena. The match between the Retrievers and the Hawks is set for Sunday at 2 p.m.