Northampton, MA --- Setters Shay Feeley (Franklin, MA) and Azita Bakhtyari (Andover, MA) combined for 30 assists and Casey Hunt (Granby, MA) and Maddy Werth (Bedford, MA) each belted eight kills the WPI volleyball team went on the road Thursday and defeated host Smith 3-0. The host Engineers took the match by set scores of 25-11, 25-23 and 25-20.
With the victory, WPI improved to 15-4 overall and 4-3 in conference play while Smith drops to 3-15 on the season and 0-7 in NEWMAC action.
The Engineers came out firing in the opening set, hitting .500 with 14 kills and only two errors.
Smith played a much more competitive second set as strong defense contained the Crimson and Gray to a .100 hitting percentage. After WPI took an 8-5 advantage, kills by Xela Miller (Grenada Hills, CA), Maca Rojas (Santiago, Chile) and Kimani Freeman (Newark, NJ) boosted the Pioneers to take a 14-9 lead, forcing an Engineers timeout. With the second set even at 22-22, back-to-back kills from Melissa Daigle (Norfolk, MA) and Brooke Klepper (Miami Beach, FL) gave WPI enough momentum to close out the set.
For WPI, Kat Hurlock (Burlington CT) hit .400 with just one kill short Hunt and Werth's game highs of eight. Feeley doled out 16 assists while Bakhtyari chipped in with 14 Kelly Rathje (Scituate, MA) led the defensive effort with 14 digs while Victoria Nassar (Salem, NH) notched 12 digs and Sandra Duarte (Valencia, CA) finished with seven blocks and two aces.
Iris Afantchao (Windsor, CT) tallied career-highs with her five kills and five blocks for the Pioneers. Elizabeth Peay (Lebanon, CT) hammered down eight kills and added two aces. Rojas totaled 18 assists, while Julie Voorhes (Ramona, CA) added 17 digs. Freeman (Newark, NJ) produced five kills and two aces.
An 18-8 gap was too large for the Pioneers to close in the third as WPI went on to complete the sweep.
WPI returns home for a Saturday Homecoming tri-match. The Crimson and Gray host Eastern Nazarene at 11am and Mass Maritime at 1pm.
Major Portion of Release Courtesy Smith Sports Information