GLASSBORO, NJ – The Rowan University volleyball team swept the final day of the Profs InvitationalSaturday Sept. 8, as itwon against Curry College, 3-0and Ursinus College, 3-2. The Profs improve to 6-2 on the season.
Match One vs.Curry College: 3-0 (27-25, 25-12, 25-17)
The Profs started strong in the first match, as they jumped out to an early 11-3 lead. Outside hitter Natalie Ogden (fr. Downingtown, PA/Bishop Shanahan)record three kills, while outside hitter Alexa Gasser (so. Broomall, PA/Villa Maria Academy)added one. The Colonels picked up the pace as they recorded the next six points to cut the deficit to 11-9. Both teams kept the game close and neededextra points to decide the winner. Middle hitter, Caroline Kilduff (jr. Rockland, MA/Rockland) smashed a kill totie the set at 25. Rowan tallied the next two points off a kill from middle hitter Jamie Shirtz (sr. Mendham, NJ/West Morris Mendham)and an error by the Colonels, to win 27-25.
The Brown and Gold controlled set two from start to finish. The Rowan offense finished with 12 kills on a .458 hitting percentage and one error. Outside hitter Kailey Gallagher (jr. Bayonne, NJ/Bayonne) got things started early with the first. After an error by Curry, outside hitter Erin Keegan (sr. Fairfield, NJ/West Essex Reg.) served back-to-back aces to take a 4-0 advantage. The Profs found some trouble a few points later, as the Colonels rallied three straightaftera kill from middle hitter Amanda Wood(fr. Toyko, Japan/Seisen International School) and two aces by setter Rachel Damstra (fr. Houston, TX/Pope John XIII), to trail 7-5. Rowan locked down and continued to dominate the remainder of the set. The match ended when Gallagher, outside hitter Megan Jacobi (jr. Nazareth, PA/Nazareth Area)and middle hitter Lauren Horbacewicz (so.Toms River, NJ/Toms River E.)tallied the final three points to win, 25-12.
The Profs continued its winning ways in the final set. The score stayed close forhalf of the set until the Rowan went on an eight-point run to take a 20-14 lead. The Colonels attempted to get back into the fight, but the Brown and Gold finished strong winning the match, 25-17.
Shirts finished the match with 11 kills on a .524 hitting percentage. Setter Tori Mock (so.Chadds Ford, PA/Archmere Academy)paced the offense with 13 assists.
Match Two vs.Ursinus College: 3-2 (19-25, 21-25, 25-19, 25-23, 15-8)
The Profs slipped in the first two sets in match two on the day, as the Bears took a 2-0 lead. Rowan buckled down and took set three 25-19. The Brown and Gold started hot as it jumped out to a9-3 advantage. The Profs kept the offense rolling as the score increased to 21-12. Ursinus fought back, butthe lead was too andRowan won the third, 25-19.
Both teams came to play in the fourth set, as it was neck-and-neck until the finish. The Bears jumped out to a 2-0 lead off a Profs’error and a kill from setter Kelly Piotrowicz (jr. Lansdale, PA/ Lansdale Catholic). The Profs battled back and claimed the lead earning the next four points to have a 4-2 advantage. The score remained close until the end of the set as it was tied 23-23. The Brown and Gold pushed through and notched the final two points of the game to win 25-23 and force a fifth set.
Rowan dominated the final set and the Bears struggled to keep up with the offensive pressure. After Ursinus committed two errors to start the match, Mock served two aces to take a 4-0 lead. The Profs widened the score, 8-3, after a kill from Gallagher and back-to-back aces from Shirtz. The Bears fought back but could not string enough points together, as Rowan completed the comeback winning the final set, 15-8.
Horbacewicz finished with a team-high eight kills, where Gallagher followed with seven. Libero Emma Cormican (so. Wallingford, PA/Strath Haven) ended the match with an impressive 29 digs.
With their outstanding play throughout the tournament, Shirtz and Mock were named to the All-Tournament team.
The Rowan University volleyball teams stays at home as it opens conference play this Tuesday, Sept.11, against Stockton Universityat 7 p.m.