2017 Little East Offensive Player of the Year (Jess Williamson)

Southern Maine Volleyball Splits, Falling to WestConn 3-1 and Defeating UMPI 3-0

Junior Jamie Jannarone (#14) and the Huskies celebrate another point (file photo by Jason Johns).
Junior Jamie Jannarone (#14) and the Huskies celebrate another point (file photo by Jason Johns).

Southern Maine Splits, Falling to WestConn 3-1, Defeating UMPI 3-0

            GORHAM, Maine -- The University of Southern Maine women's volleyball team split its two matches Saturday afternoon dropping a 3-1 decision (25-23, 19-25, 25-19, 25-20) to Little East Conference foe Western Connecticut State University in the opening match before defeating the University of Maine at Presque Isle 3-0 (25-12, 25-18, 25-15) in the third and final match at the Warren Hill Gymnasium.

            In the middle match, Western Connecticut easily handled UMPI 3-0 (25-5, 25-5, 25-14) to run its winning streak to four matches.

            With the split, Southern Maine is now 5-9 overall and 0-1 in LEC play.  Western Connecticut improved to 9-3 overall and 1-0 in conference play.  UMPI slides to 0-8 overall with the two non-conference losses.

            Against WestConn, the Huskies battled back from an early seven-point deficit (9-2) to forge a tie on three occasions, the last at 23-23, but the Colonials took the las two points for the set.  In the second set, the Huskies fell behind early, but were able to come back, highlighted by a six-point run that gave them the lead for good, to take the set.

            In the pivotal third set, WestConn jump out to the early lead again and never looked back to take a 2-1 lead.  The decisive fourth looked much like the third as the Colonials grab the early lead and held off every Huskies surge.  Junior Nicolina Chenard (Ardsley, N.Y.) was the key up front knocking down eight of her match-high 17 kills in the final set.

            Chenard led the Colonials with a double-double.  In addition to her 17 kills, she also had 10 digs.  Classmate Ali Brochu (Winsted, Conn.) added 10 kills, and junior Victoria Korzan (Southbury, Conn.) and sophomore Abbi Debes (New Milford, Conn.) contributed nine kills apiece.

            Rookie setter Rory McMaster (Canton, Mich.) had a strong all-around match with 39 assists, seven kills and eight digs.  Korzan led the Colonials with 12 digs.

            Freshman Joie Hared (South Salem, N.Y.) led the USM offense with a season-high 10 kills.  Senior Megan Gettings (Bristol, Conn.) added nine kills, and sophomore Kacey Foerster (Scarborough, Maine) chipped in eight kills.

            Sophomore Sophie Lindsay (Pasadena, Calif.) and rookie Cassidy Gibb (Lee, N.H.) combined for 31 assists.  Lindsay earned her third double-double of the season with her 18 assists and 11 digs.  Junior Rachel Chillé (Yarmouth, Maine) led all players with 13 digs.

            In the match against UMPI, Foerster picked up her sixth double-double of the campaign with 12 kills and 14 digs.  Junior Jamie Jannarone (Windham, Maine) added eight kills on 19 attacks.  Lindsay dished out 19 assists, and Cassidy added 11 more.  Junior Lauren Delissio (Hebron, Conn.) joined Foerster in double figures for digs with 12.

            Junior Maddi Thweatt (Middleton, Idaho) paced the Owls' attack with six kills.  Classmate Taylor Miller (Weeki Wachee, Fla.) added five kills.  Junior Madison Exferd (Payette, Idaho) and rookie Hailey Kelly (Wells, Maine) rotated in the setter position with each contributing seven assists.

            The Huskies hit the road for their next three matches starting with a Thursday night (7 p.m.) match at Rivier University.  UMPI will be at home next Friday (5 p.m.) for a doubleheader against Unity College.  Western Connecticut takes its four-match win streak into next Saturday's (12 p.m.) home tri-match with Rhode Island College and Sarah Lawrence College.