NORTON, Mass.—Three different players recorded at least 10 kills as Wheaton College defeated visiting Babson College, 3-1 (25-14, 21-25, 25-23, 25-17), in New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) women's volleyball action on Tuesday night at Emerson Gymnasium.
Babson, which was fourth in last week's NEWVA regional poll, is now 16-4 overall and 5-2 in conference play. Wheaton, which has won six consecutive matches, improves to 14-7 overall and 4-3 in the NEWMAC.
First-year Allie Puccio (New Hartford, N.Y.) had nine kills, while junior Gizem Yilmaz (Istanbul, Turkey) contributed seven kills and a match-high four blocks. First-year Gaby Miller (Miami, Fla.) chipped in with seven kills, junior Abby Beecher (Pittsford, N.Y.) led all players with 20 digs, and sophomore Emily Woodward (Deerfield, Mass.) dished out a career-high 28 assists in the loss.
Junior Claire Cansler (Newhall, Calif.) finished with 11 kills and three blocks, and classmate Cathryn MacGregor (North Andover, Mass.) and first-year Julia Palomba (San Carlos, Calif.) both added 10 kills apiece for the Lyons. Sophomore Becca Houghton (Emmaus, Pa.) recorded 35 assists and five service aces, while senior Stephanie Martin (Centerville, Mass.) registered a team-high 17 digs in the victory.
The Green and White led 11-9 in the opening frame before Wheaton ripped off a 16-3 run that included four kills from MacGregor and three from Cansler to take a 1-0 lead. The Beavers responded with 13 second-set kills and a key 6-0 burst that turned a 13-all tie into a 19-13 lead on their way to evening the match at a game apiece.
Babson erased a 15-10 deficit in the third set only to see the Lyons respond with four straight points to go back in front 19-15. Six errors and kills by Puccio and sophomore Kristin Carosotto (East Greenwich, R.I.) help the visitors pull even at 23-23, but Wheaton took advantage of a bad set and then got an ace from Martin for a one-set advantage.
The Beavers fell behind 10-3 early in the fourth set and got as close as four on two occasions, but the Lyons answered with four and five point runs, respectively, on their way to closing out the match.
Babson returns to action next Tuesday when it travels to Springfield at 7 p.m., while Wheaton hosts Western New England in the first of two matches on Saturday at 11 a.m.
• The Beavers are 16-32 all-time against Wheaton and had won eight of their last 10 matches against the Lyons prior to Tuesday's loss.
• Prior to Tuesday, Babson had gone 29-0 over the last two seasons when its opponents hit below .150. Wheaton hit just .131 in the victory.
• The Green and White is 5-3 this year in four-set matches.
• Despite the loss, Babson clinched a NEWMAC Tournament berth by virtue of Mount Holyoke's loss to Springfield.