No. 18 MIT Rallies Past Women's Volleyball In Five Sets
Cambridge, Mass. - September 28, 2021 - MIT rallied past the Springfield College women's volleyball team for a five-set victory in a New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) showdown on Tuesday evening. The Enginners prevailed by the scores of 28-26, 20-25, 17-25, 25-10, 15-5.
Playing a nationally-ranked team for the third time in seven days, the Pride slipped to 11-2, 3-2 in conference play as it was once again receiving votes in the AVCA Division III National Poll . MIT, who moved up to No. 18 in the nation in this week's poll, remained unbeaten at 14-0, 5-0.
Natalie Billet (Commack, N.Y.) paced Springfield with 17 kills and 12 digs, while Camryn Bancroft (Eastport, N.Y.) and Ashley Tanner (Manorville, N.Y.) each turned in eight kills. Briana Tovar (Tucson, Ariz.) was credited with a team-best 14 digs and Abigail Wright (Manhattan Beach, Calif.) recorded five aces from the end line.
Lilly Edwards was impressive with 22 kills on the pin to go along with 10 digs, while Ella Gragg had 18 kills of her own. In helping MIT to a .255 hitting percentage, Emily Cheng posted 52 assists.
A back-and-forth first set that featured 14 ties before Springfield gained a 23-21 lead following a service ace by Claire Dorr (Massapequa, N.Y.). However, out of a timeout, MIT would score consecutive points to even things up at 23, before a sideout kill from Billet gave the Pride set point. The teams would trade points before back-to-back kills from Gragg allowed the hosts to escape with a 28-26 win.
After MIT opened up a 9-6 edge to start the second set, Springfield strung together a 6-0 burst capped off by a pair of aces from Wright to gain a 13-9 cushion. The Engineers would battle back to get within 19-18, but Jamie Albrecht (Selden, N.Y.) would put a ball away to key a 4-0 run as the Pride ran away with the second set, 25-20.
Knotted up at 11 in the third set, a 6-0 run that featured four MIT miscues gave the Pride some breathing room up 17-11. Springfield would lead by as many as eight points in the frame and Billet buried Springfield's 13th kill of the frame to complete the 25-17 triumph.
It was the Engineers that ran away with the fourth set, as they jumped out to a 15-4 lead and never looked back en route to a 25-10 win. The Pride was limited to a -.045 hitting percentage, while the Engineers totaled 12 kills at a .375 clip.
In the fifth, a kill from Bancroft in transition gave the Pride a 2-1 edge, but the Engineers poured on seven-straight points to take a commanding 8-2 lead. MIT, which delivered 11 kills at a .588 team hitting percentage, would complete their comeback with a 15-5 fifth-set win.
On Saturday, Springfield will host WPI in Dana Gymnasium for a 2 pm conference tilt.
For the latest on Springfield College Athletics, follow the Pride on social media on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. Fans can also download the Springfield "Front Row" mobile app, powered by PrestoSports, on iTunes and the Android Market.