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Bulldogs fall to SHU despite season-best blocking total

Photo by DSPics.com
Photo by DSPics.com

SMITHFIELD, R.I. – The Bryant University volleyball team recorded a season-high 13 blocks over three sets but fell to Sacred Heart Saturday night at the Chace Athletic Center.

Saturday marked the first meeting between Bryant and Sacred Heart since the Bulldogs' 2018 NEC Championship victory over the Pioneers. Freshman Riley James (Pocasset, Mass.) tallied eight kills and 13 digs, leading the Bulldogs in both categories. 

Match Information
Sacred Heart 3, Bryant 0 (20-25, 17-25, 22-25)
Records: Bryant (10-13, 5-2), Sacred Heart (8-10, 4-2)
Location: Chace Athletic Center (Smithfield, R.I.) 

Coach Garlacy's Comments
"We put up a good fight tonight and came up short because of unforced errors. Both setters did a good job moving the ball around and played great defense. It was one of our best blocking nights of the year. We continue to learn and grow as a team." 

How it Happened

  • Set 1 – Bryant trailed 21-16 before scoring the next four with the help of two blocks from freshman Alysa Wright (Wayne, Pa.) to pull within one. After a Sacred Heart timeout, four straight attack errors tripped up the Bulldogs as the Pioneers closed out the first, 25-20.
  • Set 2 – The Bulldogs opened the set up 4-0 and 6-2 before the Pioneers pulled even with the next four points. Bryant would extend its lead back to four at 14-10 before Sacred Heart answered with the next seven and led the rest of the set.
  • Set 3 – The teams were tied for the 13th time in the set when freshman Maggie Ryan (Bethesda, Md.) got in on back-to-back points – a kill and a block with Wright – to even things at 20. The Pioneers would respond to score five of the final seven points to close out the three-set match.

Stats/Notes

  • James was in double digits in digs for the eighth time on the year and added a career-high three blocks.
  • Wright collected a career-high five blocks, while sophomore Caroline Kennedy (San Juan Capistrano, Calif.) matched her career-best with five. Wright added her first career ace.
  • Redshirt-junior Sydney Gorski (Chagrin Falls, Ohio) was in on four blocks, including two solo, while sophomore Haley O'Brien (Milton, Mass.) added three.
  • Junior Erika Ward (Rochester, Mich.) recorded 11 digs to improve to 1,256 for her career, 119 back of Kristin Kingi for Bryant's Division I program record.
  • Bryant totaled 13 blocks in a three-set match for the first time since Aug. 26, 2016 vs. Hartford.
  • The Bulldogs fall to 26-18 all-time against Sacred Heart and 8-16 in the programs' Division I meetings.

Up Next
Bryant closes out a five-match stretch at the Chace Athletic Center when the Bulldogs host Central Connecticut Tuesday at 7 p.m. Tickets for Tuesday's contest and all 2019 home matches are available HERE

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