Baltimore, Md.— The UMBC volleyball squad defeated UMass Lowell, 3-1, on Friday at the RAC. Senior Hannah Schmidt (Catonsville, Md./Mount de Sales) led the charge with 12 kills for the Retrievers (8-8, 2-1 AE).
UMBC jumped out to an early 10-7 lead in the opening set. The Retrievers opened things up thanks in part to a River Hawk service error, to take a 13-8 lead. UMass Lowell would not go away quietly. The River Hawks fought back, cutting the deficit to just three points, at 17-14. Then it was time for senior Hannah Schmidt to take over. Schmidt laid down a kill to force a River Hawks timeout. From there, Lowell would take control, rattling off five straight points at the end of the match to take the set 26-24.
The second stanza saw each team go back and forth, with neither side gaining an advantage. Freshman Paola Rojas (San Lorenzo, Puerto Rico/Notre Dame) got the Retriever rally going, with a kill to make it 11-9 early. However, the River Hawks would keep things close, never trailing by more than three.
Rojas and sophomore Ivana Kostic (Belgrade, Serbia/Srednja Skola Grocka) gave the Retrievers the push they needed, combining for a huge block to give UMBC a four point lead. From there, UMBC would go on to win the set 25-18, after scoring five straight to end it.
UMBC hit their stride in the third, leading off the set with a pair of Schmidt service aces and five straight points. However the River Hawks would fight back like they have all match, but UMBC would get back to back blocks from Kostic and Paige Miller (Reading, Pa./Schuylkill Valley) to take 14-7 lead, forcing a Lowell timeout. UMBC won the set, 25-12, thanks in part to a Krystal Mlemchukwu (Baltimore, Md./Western Tech) kill.
Junior Sherelle Walker (New Freedom, Pa./Susquehannock) took control of the fourth, pushing the Retrievers ahead early. However, UMass Lowell would not back down, keeping the deficit around two points. Walker would strike again, laying down back-to-back kills to force a River Hawk timeout. From there the Retrievers would ease to a 25-13 win, winning the match 3-1.
Schmidt led the way with 12 kills, hitting at a .407 clip. Rojas chipped in nine winners for the Retrievers, who hit .282 as a team. Miller had 40 helpers for the Retrievers in the win.
UMBC returns to the court on Sunday, October 12, when they host New Hampshire at 1:00 p.m.