When and Where: September 1, 2017 – Waltham, Mass. (Dana Center)
Match 1 Score: Southern New Hampshire University 3, Wilmington (Del.) University 1
Match 2 Score: Bentley University 3, Southern New Hampshire University 1
Records: SNHU 1-1, Wilmington 0-1, Bentley 1-0
Senior Marisa Coronis (Hudson, N.H.) racked up 24 kills and 27 digs over two matches, as the Southern New Hampshire University women's volleyball team opened its season by splitting a pair of matches at the Hoffman Memorial Invitational on Friday at Bentley University's Dana Center. SNHU bested Wilmington (Del.) University, 3-1 (18-25, 25-17, 25-17, 25-13), before falling to Bentley by the same 3-1 (15-25, 25-13, 25-23, 25-20) score.
Junior Jessica Dillon (Burnt Hills, N.Y.) submitted a stellar performance in her first two matches in a Penmen uniform with 19 kills, 25 assists and 24 digs. Fellow junior Priscila Castro (Belo Horizonte, Brazil) did the same in her first action with SNHU, turning in a 21-kill, 19-dig performance on the day.
The Penmen came out of the gates slow in their first set of the year, falling behind, 5-1, before a pair of kills from Castro trimmed the deficit to 10-9. Wilmington would widen the gap and SNHU would never pull in front in the set. Leading, 17-15, the Wildcats closed the stanza on an 8-3 run to take a 1-0 lead.
Southern New Hampshire figured it out in the second set, however, as it never trailed. The Penmen led, 17-15, when a kill from Coronis set off an 8-2 run, which included a pair of service aces from sophomore Joanne Coffey (Merrimack, N.H.) and pulled SNHU even at 1-1.
Wilmington moved out to an early 6-2 advantage in the third set, before three kills from Coronis buoyed a 6-1 blitz that put SNHU in front, 8-7. Wilmington would go back into the lead at 12-9 before an 8-2 run that featured three service aces from Castro leapfrogged the Penmen on top, 17-14. Wilmington would close to within one before five straight points from Southern New Hampshire jump-started an 8-1 rush that gave it a 2-1 lead in the match. Coronis added a pair of kills during the stretch, while senior Kathleen Schurman (Burnt Hills, N.Y.) tallied a kill and a service ace.
SNHU again fell behind in the fourth, but five kills from Castro carried a 13-4 run that opened a 17-9 advantage for the Penmen. Dillon recorded two kills and a service ace during the stretch. Southern New Hampshire would later close the set and the match with a 7-2 spurt that was carried by three Coffey kills.
Dillon amassed a triple-double of 12 kills, 14 assists and 13 digs, while hitting .462, with Castro providing a double-double of 12 kills, 10 digs and three service aces on .346 hitting. Coronis also tallied 12 kills on .357 hitting to go along with seven digs. Coffey handed out 26 assists with nine digs, five kills and a pair of service aces. Schurman totaled up 29 digs. Sophomore Amanda Costales (Wantagh, N.Y.) chimed in with seven kills.
Southern New Hampshire picked up where it left off in the first set against Bentley, opening up a 5-2 lead on kills from Dillon and senior Carolyn Scacchi (Peabody, Mass.). The Falcons would trim their deficit to one before four kills from Castro helped the Penmen rip off an 8-1 run that ballooned the advantage to 16-8. After Bentley stopped the bleeding with three straight points, a pair of kills from Coronis highlighted a 9-4 rush for SNHU that capped the set and handed the Penmen a 1-0 lead.
Bentley would fight back in the second, however, building a 19-7 lead. A pair of kills from Costales would trim the SNHU deficit to 21-11, but the Falcons would cruise to tie the match.
The third set proved to be the most tightly-contested of the afternoon, with Southern New Hampshire leaping out to a 4-1 lead before Bentley forged the first of six ties. With the set knotted at 11, Bentley rattled off six of the next eight points to open a 17-13 advantage. Three kills from Coronis underscored a 5-1 spurt that pulled the Penmen even at 18-all, but Bentley notched the next four to go up 22-18. SNHU again answered the bell, with a kill and service ace from Coronis carrying a 4-0 run that made it 22-22. The Falcons then pushed it to set-point before a Costales kill sliced the deficit in half at 24-23, but a Bentley block sealed it and gave the hosts a 2-1 edge.
Southern New Hampshire built a 3-0 lead in the fourth, but Bentley responded with a 17-5 blitz that gave it a commanding 17-8 advantage. The Penmen hit back with a 10-3 run – capped by a pair of Coronis kills – to slash the deficit to 20-18. With the score 22-20, Bentley rolled off three straight points to clinch the match.
Coronis tallied 12 kills and 20 digs, while Coffey also notched a double-double of 18 assists and 19 digs. Dillon posted seven kills, 11 assists and 11 digs, with Castro recording nine kills and nine digs. Costales chipped in eight kills and seven digs. Schurman racked up 17 digs.
-The .344 hitting percentage in the Wilmington match is the highest for the Penmen since they hit .352 in a 3-0 sweep of Assumption College on Sept. 8, 2015.
-The .522 SNHU hit in the second set against the Wildcats is the most in a single set since the Penmen hit a blistering .727 in the third stanza of a 3-0 triumph at Nyack College on Sept. 27, 2014.
-Southern New Hampshire outhit Wilmington in the final three sets and .344-.136, overall.
-Bentley claimed a higher hitting percentage in the final three sets and outhit SNHU, .149-.074, overall.
The Penmen wrap up their time at the Hoffman Memorial Invitational on Saturday, Sept. 2 by taking on Caldwell University at 10 a.m., followed by a match with Mercy College at 5 p.m.
For the latest on Southern New Hampshire University athletics, follow the Penmen via social media on Twitter, Facebook, Youtube and Instagram. Sign up to receive text message alerts and e-mail newsletters about your favorite Penmen teams here.