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Bryant outlasts Robert Morris for fourth straight win

Bryant Athletics/Miles McQuiggan
Bryant Athletics/Miles McQuiggan

MOON TOWNSHIP, Pa. – The Bryant University volleyball team picked up its second five-set road win in less than 24 hours by outlasting Robert Morris Saturday in a Northeast Conference contest.

Five Bulldogs were in double-figures in kills, including career-highs from freshmen Haley O'Brien (Milton, Mass.) and Jenna Knight (Scottsdale, Ariz.).

Match Information
Bryant 3, Robert Morris 2 (23-25, 25-23, 26-24, 24-26, 18-16)
Records: Bryant (17-9, 7-2); Robert Morris (8-16, 2-7)
Location: North Athletic Center (Moon Township, Pa.) 

Coach Garlacy's Comments
"Seniors Kristin Kingi and Julia Flynn led the defense, but the offense was led by the freshmen with double-digit kills from Kennedy, O'Brien and Knight. It was a hard-fought battle with many pressure situations that we handled with composure. It was another great full-team effort."

How it Happened

  • Set 1 – Robert Morris jumped out to a 7-1 lead in the opening set, but Bryant would battle back to within one point three times late in the set. Kennedy had Bryant's final five kills of the set, but the Colonials were able to hold on for a 25-23 decision.
  • Set 2 – Five straight RMU points gave the Colonials a 10-7 advantage, and Robert Morris extended its lead to 22-18, in sight of a 2-0 lead in the match. Bryant responded by tallying seven of the final eight points of the set in a stretch with two kills each from O'Brien and redshirt-senior Julia Flynn (Pembroke, Mass.), with a kill from Flynn capping off a 25-23 set to even the match.
  • Set 3 – Bryant led 12-7 in the third, but four straight Colonial points pulled RMU within one. The set would be separated by no more than two the rest of the way. Flynn stepped up again down the stretch, collecting kills for Bryant's final four points of the set in a 26-24 decision to go up 2-1.
  • Set 4 – The Bulldogs opened up a 7-1 advantage to begin the set, but the Colonials battled back, using an 11-3 run to go ahead 15-13. Bryant would tie the set three times, including at 24-24, before RMU closed out a 26-24 win in the fourth to force a fifth set.
  • Set 5 – Bryant held leads of 6-0 and 8-2 to begin the fifth set, but four straight RMU points had the Colonials back within one at 11-10. The deciding set would go beyond 15 before a kill from Flynn forced match point at 17-16 and RMU followed with an attack into the net to close out the match. The Bulldogs tallied three blocks in the final set, with senior Grace Richmeyer (DeSoto, Mo.) in on two of them.

Stats/Notes

  • Kennedy collected 19 kills on a .368 hitting percentage with three blocks.
  • O'Brien with .357 with a career-high 16 kills along with four blocks (three solo.)
  • Knight had a career-high 12 kills on a .308 hitting percentage.
  • Senior Kristin Kingi (Thousand Oaks, Calif.) posted 20 digs and 12 kills.
  • Flynn added 16 kills and 17 digs.
  • Senior Kirstyn Sperry (Phoenix, Ariz.) totaled 42 assists, while senior Julia Malet (San Rafael, Calif.) chipped in with 23.
  • Bryant improves to 10-12 all-time against Robert Morris and has won the last six meetings.
  • Bryant moves to 6-4 in five-set matches this season and has won its last four five-setters – both matchups with the Colonials and road matches at Saint Francis U and Stony Brook.

Up Next
Bryant will host Central Connecticut Saturday, Oct. 27 at 6 p.m. for its Bulldogs vs. Breast Cancer match.

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