SMITHFIELD, R.I. – Four Bulldogs posted double-digit kill totals as the Bryant University volleyball team collected a four-set victory over Providence Tuesday night at the Chace Athletic Center.
Freshman Riley James (Pocasset, Mass.) recorded her first career double-double in the victory and was one of four Bulldogs to tie for a team-high 10 kills.
Bryant has now defeated Providence in three consecutive seasons – the longest winning streak for either team in the Division I series history.
Bryant 3, Providence 1 (25-13, 25-21, 23-25, 25-21)
Records: Bryant (3-5), Providence (3-4)
Location: Chace Athletic Center (Smithfield, R.I.)
Coach Garlacy's Comments
"We had great balance in our attack tonight with four hitters in double figures. Our setters moved the ball well and our defense and scrappy play put us over the top tonight. Our opposites, Caroline Kennedy and Jenna Knight, did an outstanding job and continue to be consistent."
How it Happened
- Set 1 – An 8-1 run, fueled by a pair of aces from freshman Mia Cergol (East Northport, N.Y.), put Bryant ahead 10-4 in the set. The Bulldogs would push the lead to double digits after alternating kills from sophomore Caroline Kennedy (San Juan Capistrano, Calif.) and aces from freshman Emma McGovern (Long Beach, N.Y.) turned a 14-8 lead into an 18-8 advantage. Sophomore Alisi Motu'apuaka (Virginia Beach, Va.) would follow with a kill out of a Friar timeout and the Bulldogs would close out a 10-point first set victory.
- Set 2 – The set was tied at 15 when Bryant rattled off the next five points with two kills from James and one from Kennedy. The Friars would force a Bulldog timeout after three straight points made it 24-21 in favor of Bryant, but McGovern responded with a kill out of the timeout for the 2-0 lead.
- Set 3 – The Friars used a 7-1 stretch to take a 16-13 advantage and would lead the rest of the set. The Bulldogs would cut the deficit to one on six occasions late in the set but could not pull even as the Friars took a 25-23 to keep the match alive.
- Set 4 – Providence led 13-10 before Bryant ran off the next six with two kills from sophomore Haley O'Brien (Milton, Mass.) and two aces from junior Erika Ward (Rochester, Mich.). The Friars would even the set at 19 before four straight Bulldog points, three courtesy of O'Brien, put Bryant back in control. Kills from McGovern and sophomore Jenna Knight (Scottsdale, Ariz.) sealed the victory.
- Kennedy recorded 10 kills on a .500 hitting percentage (10-1-18) and has hit .382 in her last four matches.
- James posted career-bests in kills (10) and digs (11.)
- The 10 kills for Knight and O'Brien were season-highs.
- McGovern collected 10 digs for her third double-digit effort in her first eight collegiate matches.
- Motu'apuaka led the Bulldogs with 19 assists, while Cergol tallied 18.
- McGovern and Cergol recorded three aces each. Bryant has posted 2.54 aces per set over its last four matches.
- O'Brien and McGovern were each in on three of Bryant's six blocks on the night.
- The Bulldogs hit .188 for the match, while the Friars were at .056.
- Bryant improves to 9-6 against Providence in the Bulldogs' Division I era and 10-16 all-time in the series that dates back to the 1970s.
- The Bulldogs better themselves to 47-10 (.825) at the Chace Athletic Center since the start of 2015 and 3-1 this year.
Bryant travels to West Point for the Black Knights Invitational. The Bulldogs will face Kent State Friday before matches against Binghamton and Army West Point Saturday.
Tickets for the 2019 season, including the Bulldogs' next home match Sept. 17 vs. Brown, are available HERE.