Klepper Keys Volleyball’s First NEWMAC Win of Season Versus Smith

Brooke Klepper and Melissa Daigle

WORCESTER -- Senior Brooke Klepper (Miami Beach, FL) hit .714 with two block assists as WPI defeated Smith, 3-0 (25-23, 25-11, 25-11), in a NEWMAC Women's Volleyball match Tuesday night in Harrington Auditorium.

The Engineers improve to 4-6 and 1-2 in league play while the Pioneers even out at 5-5 and are now 0-2 in conference action.

Junior Casey Hunt (Granby, CT) led all student-athletes with eight kills followed by freshman Amanda Wetmore (Hudson, NH) with seven. Junior Azita Bakhtyari (Andover, MA) accounted for 24 of 27 assists while classmate Victoria Nassar (Salem, NH) tallied five aces and paced the Engineers with a dozen digs.

Senior Xela Miller (Grenada Hills, CA) accounted for six kills as sophomore Kimani Freeman (Newark, NJ) doled out 13 helpers. Senior Sakura Tamaki (New York, NY) came up with a contest-best 13 digs.

After WPI claimed a 2-0 lead in the first, Smith went on an 11-1 run that featured kills by four different Pioneers. The Engineers charged back and took the 13-12 lead courtesy of an ace by Bahktyari before owning the 20-14 cushion thanks to an ace by Nassar. The Pioneers were able to stave off a pair of set points thanks to a miscue and a kill by senior Elizabeth Peay (Lebanon, CT).

The Boynton Hillers jumped out to an 11-2 lead in the second and never looked back. WPI enjoyed a 10-4 lead after one of a handful of runs en route to the victory.

The Engineers head to LEC champion UMass Boston and Smith hosts Southern Vermont Thursday at 7pm.