WORCESTER -- The WPI volleyball team fell victim to an efficient attack from visiting Emerson, falling to the Lions 3-0 (25-15, 25-13, 25-17) in New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) action on Saturday. Emerson improves to 7-1 overall, 1-1 in conference play with WPI dipping to 5-3, 0-2 in the NEWMAC.
The Emerson defense kept WPI off-balance, holding the Engineers to a .050 team attack while hitting .222. The Lions racked up 16 blocks, while WPI had just two in the match.
Emerson's Isabella Chu (Belmont, CA) led the offense with a match-high 13 kills, hitting .478 for the match. Caroline Bond (Macungie, PA) captained the offense, dishing out 30 assists and adding eight digs, while Amelia Combs (Eugene, OR) also filled out her stat sheet with eight kills and 11 digs. Caroline Davis (Burbank, CA) led the Lions' defense with 17 digs, while Isabella Cubba (Grosse Point Park, MI) had seven blocks and Parker Cummings (Rochester, NY) added five.
WPI was paced by seven kills and six digs from Olivia Deckers (Marlboro, MA) with Lily Eldridge (Danvers, MA) picking up 18 assists and seven digs. Maddie Sanborn (Londonderry, NH) finished with five kills while Victoria Escuer (Caracas, Venezuela) led the Engineers with nine digs.
The Engineers scored the first two points of the first set, but Emerson quickly fired back, going up 7-4. With the Lions up 10-7, it was a set-changing 7-0 run that put the visitors in the drivers' seat, up 17-7. WPI got no closer than a nine-point deficit the rest of the way, as a Cubba kill ended set one, 25-15.
Emerson carried the momentum into the second set, opening the frame with four unanswered points. WPI kept the match close, trailing 9-6 before a 7-4 edge put Emerson up 16-10. The Engineers made one more push, but another surge from the Lions gave them the set, 25-13, with a 2-0 match lead.
WPI rallied from behind 5-1 in the third set to tie things at 5-5. Emerson crept ahead, but the Engineers stayed within a point until an Emily Hudson (Melrose, MA) kill put WPI up 12-11. That was the last lead the hosts would have, however, as Emerson closed the set on a 14-5 run to take the third 25-17 to complete the sweep.
WPI continues conference play on Tuesday, heading to Wheaton for a 7pm start. Emerson is also back in action on Tuesday, hosting Rivier in a 7pm non-conference clash.