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Bryant off to first 4-0 start in NEC with four-set victory at FDU

Photo by Bryant Athletic Communications
Photo by Bryant Athletic Communications

HACKENSACK, N.J. – The Bryant University volleyball team is 4-0 in Northeast Conference play for the first time, as the Bulldogs picked up a four-set road victory at Fairleigh Dickinson Friday night.

Game Information
Bryant 3, Fairleigh Dickinson 1 (23-25, 25-14, 25-19, 25-23)
Records: Bryant (13-8, 4-0 NEC); Fairleigh Dickinson (3-15, 0-4 NEC)
Location: Rothman Center (Hackensack, N.J.) 

Coach Garlacy's Comments
"We served very tough tonight and at times played very fast. It was a battle to the end – FDU was scrappy and we had to earn every point. Erika Ward had her first career double-double and our offense was well-balanced." 

How it Happened

  • Set 1 – FDU led 10-6 to start the match but a 5-0 run that included three kills from senior Kiley Robbins (Garland, Texas) put Bryant ahead. The Bulldogs would not trail again until the end of the set, as after leading 23-22, the Knights rattled off the final three points to walk away with the 25-23 victory.
  • Set 2 – Bryant jumped out to a 10-3 advantage and led by at least five for the remainder of the set. The Bulldogs hit .314 in the frame for the 25-14 win to even the match.
  • Set 3 – FDU was up 16-13 before an 8-0 Bulldog run fueled by five Robbins kills. The senior had nine kills in the set as the Bulldogs took a 2-1 lead with a 25-19 win.
  • Set 4 – Bryant had a 20-13 advantage before FDU stormed back with a 10-3 run to tie the set at 23. Junior Grace Richmeyer (DeSoto, Mo.) answered with a pair of kills to close out the set and match.

Stats/Notes                                                         

  • Junior Julia Flynn (Pembroke, Mass.) had a team-high 18 kills and added 16 digs.
  • Robbins tallied 17 kills, while Richmeyer collected 11 kills and five blocks.
  • Junior Kirstyn Sperry (Phoenix, Ariz.) had a solid all-around performance, recording 30 assists, 20 digs, four blocks and three acrs.
  • Freshman Erika Ward (Rochester, Mich.) posted her first career double-double with 22 digs and a career-high 12 assists.
  • Junior Julia Malet (San Rafael, Calif.) tallied 24 assists, nine digs and two aces.
  • The Bulldogs recorded eight aces and eight blocks as a team.
  • Bryant's 4-0 start is the best in conference play since joining Division I. The Bulldogs began playing a Northeast Conference schedule in 2009. The previous best was a 3-0 start in 2015.
  • With Bryant's win Friday and LIU Brooklyn's victory over Robert Morris, the Bulldogs are the lone remaining unbeaten team in NEC play.

Up Next
Bryant is back in action Saturday at 6 p.m. with a trip to Fairfield, Connecticut, to face Sacred Heart.