RINDGE, N.H. (November 10, 2017) – Clinging by a thread in the Northeast-10 Conference volleyball standings, the Franklin Pierce University Ravens needed to take care of business Friday night to remain in the hunt for a postseason berth. Le Moyne College had other plans as they knocked the Ravens out of postseason contention with a 3-0 (15-25, 14-25, 21-25) sweep of the Crimson and Grey in the Fieldhouse.
With the victory, the Dolphins swim to 14-11, 7-6 NE10 while the Ravens free fall to 7-17, 5-8 NE10. Le Moyne entered the game on a three-game winning streak and increased their run to four straight. The guests had the more superior net presence in the match and made fewer mistakes than their counterparts did.
For Le Moyne, junior right side hitter Jessica Miller led all players with a game-best 12 kills and a .417 hitting percentage. She also added three blocks. Teammate Anna Hafoka chipped in nine kills, four digs, one assist and a game-best four total blocks. Hannah St. Jean (Olympia, Wash.) paced the Ravens with six kills and four total blocks. Danielle Varricchio (Boynton Beach, Fla.) produced six kills, nine digs, and two blocks.
The Dolphins began the match fast opening the duel with five consecutive points. A Marguerite Dillon attack error temporarily stopped the run before they notched three more points to move ahead 8-1. With the guests looking to hold a double-digit lead early, FPU used a few points and an Ofeira Petaia (Honolulu, Hawaii) kill assisted by senior setter Hannah Runge (Deltona, Fla.) to push the Ravens within seven once again at 12-5. A dual block from Jacquelyne Ghindia and Paige Wallace gave the Dolphins their first double-digit lead before the Ravens chipped away and brought the deficit back down to single figures. Leading by nine, Le Moyne and Marguerite Dillon pushed the lead to 10, 23-13 as she rocketed a huge and powerful attempt into the center of the court. The Dolphins eventually won the set 25-15 on the strength of a Hafoka kill.
The guests jumped ahead 4-0 early before St. Jean tallied the first point for the Crimson and Grey. St. Jean and Varricchio teamed up for a stuff of Miller at the net to cut the deficit to two, 6-4. Trailing 12-8, Petaia served the ball and placed it perfectly before the backline in between two defenders to push the Ravens within three, 12-9. Le Moyne continued to build their lead as Miller and Danica Durdines blocked Varricchio to up their advantage to 18-11. The Dolphins closed the set on a 7-2 scoring binge to take a 2-0 match lead by a 25-14 margin.
Le Moyne started strong again in set number three as they held a 9-1 edge through the first 10 serves. However, Franklin Pierce cut into their lead at 10-5 using a Sam Bitner (Titusville, Fla.) kill, a Petaia kill and a St. Jean stuff. The Dolphins immediately answered with five consecutive points of their own with Danica Durdines serving to reestablish a 10-point lead. FPU slowly began to chip away at their deficit as Bitner and St. Jean blocked an attempted kill to make the score 21-14. A 6-1 mini-run for Pierce made it a two serve set as a key Varricchio block put the Ravens within two 23-21. Le Moyne tallied the final two markers to win the set though 25-21.
The Ravens conclude their 2017 season tomorrow with a Senior Day contest versus the College of Saint Rose at 1:00 p.m.
For more information on Franklin Pierce Athletics, please visit the official website of Franklin Pierce Athletics (http://athletics.franklinpierce.edu). Also be sure to follow the Ravens through the Department of Athletics' official Facebook page (http://www.facebook.com/FranklinPierceRavens), its YouTube channel (http://www.youtube.com/franklinpiercesports) and its Twitter feed (http://twitter.com/FPUathletics). Fans wishing to purchase Franklin Pierce volleyball apparel can do so at the Department of Athletics' online store (http://athletics.franklinpierce.edu/store).