DARTMOUTH, Mass. – With the game even at one set apiece, the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth gutted out a 29-27 third set before cruising in the fourth, battling to a 3-1 victory over Bridgewater State in the Corsairs' home opener on Thursday.
Score: UMass Dartmouth 3, Bridgewater State 1
Records: UMass Dartmouth (4-2) | Bridgewater State (2-8)
How it Happened
UMass Dartmouth was led by junior Amanda LaCroix's (East Freetown, Mass.) match-high 21 attacks on a .226 attack percentage, with Nicole Silverman (Chelmsford, Mass.) firing off 18 kills and freshman Alivia Connors (Derry, N.H.) 10 with a match-high six aces. For the second-straight match, five Corsairs hit double-digit digs, paced by Jillian Sykora's (Waterford, Conn.) 20. Sophomore Jordan Rittberger (Huntington, N.Y.) fed the offense with 44 assists.
Bridgewater State's attack was led by junior Kayla Baril (Seekonk, Mass.) with 11 kills, with Elexi Miskiv (Centerville, Mass.) and Alyssa Kelly (Mansfield, Mass.) combining for 30 assists. Five Bears recorded double-digit digs, paced by Cassidy Tyros's (Chelmsford, Mass.) total of 21.
Both teams fought for each point in two tightly-contested sets to begin the match. After the Corsairs took the first set 25-23, Bridgewater State bounced right back with a 25-22 decision in the second. The Corsairs then turned the tide in the third.
The Bears went up quick, taking a 5-0 lead to start on Abigail Gardner's (Holden, Mass.) serve before forcing a UMass Dartmouth timeout. After the Corsairs edged back within four, Gardner again pushed the visitors further ahead, this time 18-10 before the hosts gathered themselves.
With Sykora serving, the Corsairs rattled off eight unanswered points, and eventually tied the score at 19 with three straight LaCroix kills. Bridgewater State bumped back ahead three, but eventually miscues would allow UMass Dartmouth enough room to battle back for a 29-27 decision.
The fourth set would then go fully in favor of the Corsairs, as the hosts finished off the Bears with a .282 team attack percentage and just three attack errors.
Inside the Numbers
- UMass Dartmouth recorded season-highs with a .156 team attack percentage, 56 kills and 78 digs.
- LaCroix posts UMass Dartmouth's first 20-plus kill performance of the season and her first in a Corsair uniform, rounding out her line with 17 digs, two service aces and two block assists.
- Rittberger sets a new career high with 44 assists, chipping in 10 digs and a pair of service aces.
- Sykora earns her eighth career 20-dig outing, and first of the season, tacking on three service aces.
- The Corsairs secure their first win over Bridgewater State since 2012 and snap a four-game skid to the Bears.
UMass Dartmouth hosts its first tri-match of the season on Saturday, opening up Little East Conference play against Plymouth State at noon and squaring off with Curry at 4 p.m. Bridgewater State makes the trip for Wheaton for a tri-match beginning at 11 a.m.