Volleyball wins two of three, remains unbeaten in MASCAC

[Erin Fitzmaurice]

By Jen Fortin

Staff Writer

Game one against Worcester Polytechnic Institute on Saturday ended the four-game win streak for the Rams volleyball team. The 3-0 loss to the then 19-7 team was a close matchup for the Rams, losing the sets at 25-22, 30-28 and 25-19.

Alycia Rackliffe completed 18 kills, 10 digs and two service aces. Mackenzie Whalen contributed to 29 of the 31 total assist and also had two service aces.

Vicki Anderson led the team with 11 digs. Rackliffe additionally had four blocks while Casie Thurber had two.

For WPI, outside hitters Casey Hunt and Maddy Werth combined for 22 kills against the Rams. Senior setter Shay Feeley had 22 assists and four service aces.

Libero Victoria Nassar totaled 16 digs. Samantha Bircsak and Sandra Duarte had three block assists each.

In the first set, Whalen captures the first five points with two service aces and kills by Rackliffe and Thurber. The WPI Engineers tied the game, and eventually took the lead and set win.

In set two, the two teams tied at 23 points. A kill by Werth gave the Engineers the lead. The game was then again tied at 24 from a WPI service error. The two teams tied at 25, 26, 27 and 28 points. WPI gains the lead and wins the set with a kill by Duarte.

The third set proved to be a close match for the first few points. WPI got ahead and despite Framingham’s efforts to close the gap, WPI won with another kill from Duarte.

The second game on Saturday was an easy win for FSU, beating Keene State 3-0 with set scores of 25-11, 25-15 and 25-22.

Rackliffe had 14 kills and Julia Wan had eight. Whalen provided 27 of the 29 assists.

The Rams totaled seven service aces, with Whalen and Rackliffe producing two each. Sarah Leonard had 10 digs in the game.

Thurber had a season-high seven blocks and Rackliffe totaled six.

The Keene Owls’ Courtney Collins led the team with eight kills in the game. Setter Katie Cunningham completed 15 assists. x

Freshman Hannah Syzmanski had two service aces against the Rams. The team totaled 12 block assists with three of those coming from Collins and two from Cunningham.

FSU dominated in kills for the first two sets, totaling 23 while the Owls only had nine. In the third set, Keene State surpassed the Rams with 12 kills compared to the Rams’ nine.

In set one, Framingham established and kept the lead. Keene was held at 11 set points while the Rams got the remaining points by two kills from Rackliffe and one from Deirdre Fay.

The second set began as more of an even matchup between the two teams, but FSU did take the lead. Keene remained at 15 points while the Rams scored the last six points in kills by Thurber, Leonard and Rackliffe and were assisted by Keene attack errors.

The third set showed slight promise for the Owls after pulling ahead 17-14. With a set score of 24-21, Keene trailed by only one after completing two service aces. The Rams got the 25th point on a kill from Wan.

The Rams had another 3-0 win against Regis on Monday. Both teams placed first in their respective conferences.

Rackliffe totaled 12 kills, 14 digs and four blocks. Wan also contributed 10 kills.

Whalen again led with 26 assists on the night. Leonard and Rackliffe had two service aces each. Thurber also had two blocks.

For Regis, Katryna Vaesey dominated with 15 kills while Shay Faber had 33 assists. Caroline Fuentes and Stephanie Carter combined to have 24 digs.

Six-foot Kayla Nystedt completed three blocks against the Rams while Faber also had two.

Regis led in kills for the first two sets, despite not winning any of the three sets played.

The Rams won the first set 26-24 in a back and forth battle that ended on Regis’ attack errors.

The second set allowed for FSU to gain a lead by double, 14-7. Regis was then kept at 20 points for the set while Framingham got the remaining two points in a kill by Thurber and a ball handling error from the Pride.

In the third set, Framingham scored the first three initial points, two of those gained from Rackliffe kills. The Rams kept the lead and held Regis at 15 points in the set. A kill from Wan and a Pride attack error sealed the win for Framingham State.

The Rams currently sit at 18-10.

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