DURHAM, N.H. - Junior outside hitter Lauren Knight (Centerville, Mass.) recorded a match-high 15 kills and seven service aces to propel the University of New Hampshire women's volleyball team to Saturday afternoon's 3-0 victory against St. Peter's College at Lundholm Gymnasium. The game scores were 30-18, 30-27 and 30-21.
UNH improved to 8-9 with its third consecutive victory while St. Peter's, which was a 3-2 victor against Brown University earlier in the day, falls to 2-11.
The Wildcats fell behind 2-0 in Game 1 and trailed 6-4 before reeling off seven consecutive points to take a lead they would not relinquish at 11-6. Knight ignited the rally with a pair of service aces and the Peahens never trimmed the deficit to less than three points the rest of the way. The visitors hurt themselves in the opening game with a -.033 hitting percentage and five blocking errors. In comparison, New Hampshire recorded a .400 hitting percentage.
St. Peter's took an early 3-1 lead in Game 2 and later held a 15-13 advantage following a kill by Robin Richison and an Elizabeth Nowak service ace. Once again led by the charges of Knight, UNH won six straight points to build a 19-15 lead. Knight recorded four kills during that stretch. UNH led by as many as six points, 26-20, but SPC rallied within 26-24 on a kill by Ludmila Kechina, who finished with a team-high 12 kills.
A service error stopped the St. Peter's run and the 'Cats pulled within game point at 29-25. The Peahens fought off three game points but succumbed in the second game on Knight's ninth kill of Game 2.
In Game 3, the Wildcats built an early 6-1 cushion but SPC rallied to tie the score 12-12. A kill by Alyson Coler (Monte Sereno, Calif.) began a four-point run that put the 'Cats back in front to stay. The Peahens closed the gap to two points on three occasions - the last coming at 20-18 - but UNH won five consecutive points, including two on Knight service aces, to take an insurmountable 25-18 lead.
Coler finished with 10 kills for UNH and Erin Ludwig (Franklin Lakes, N.J.) registered 28 assists. Sasha Scott (North Branford, Conn.) was credited with a match-high 18 digs.
Tzvetomila Dotcheva finished with 10 kills for St. Peter's. Alma Qose had 24 assists and led the defensive effort with 12 digs.
New Hampshire returns to action Oct. 1 with a home match against Connecticut. Match time at Lundholm Gymnasium is 7 p.m.