SPRINGFIELD, Mass., September 19, 2006 – Springfield College senior middle blockers MaryKathryn O’Neil (Liverpool, N.Y.) and Rachael Witte (Utica, N.Y.) recorded 20 and 19 kills, respectively, to lead the Pride past Smith College this evening, 3-1, in a New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) match at Blake Arena.
SC came out firing in game one, winning the frame by a score of 30-17. The Pride then won a close, 30-27 game to take a quick lead in the match. The Pioneers (1-6, 1-2 NEWMAC) would not go away that quietly, however, capturing the third game, 30-26. SC responded in the fourth to win the game and the match by a 30-19 edge. With the win, the Pride improves to 10-1 overall on the year and a perfect 3-0 in conference action.
Sophomore setter Caitlin Mulroy (Syracuse, N.Y.) registered a match-best 58 assists in the victory to go along with 13 digs, four kills, three blocks, and one service ace. Senior libero Leah Hettrick (Meriden, Conn.) had a team-high 23 digs for SC, as O’Neil, a tri-captain, totaled a match-best eight blocks to add to her 20 kills.
For Smith College, junior middle blocker Sara Hoffman had a very solid match for the Pioneers, leading all attackers with 22 kills on 43 total swings with just six errors for a .372 hitting percentage. Junior outside hitter Catherine Shafer chipped in with a match-best 24 digs, while also adding 10 kills.
The Pride will next travel to Cambridge, Mass., to compete in the MIT Invitational on Friday and Saturday, September 22nd and 23rd.