Women's volleyball takes five-set loss at Saint Anselm

MANCHESTER, N.H. - The Saint Michael's College women's volleyball team dropped a five-set match at Saint Anselm College, 3-2 (15-25, 25-14, 15-25, 26-24, 15-5), on Tuesday at Stoutenburgh Gym. The Purple Knights had their three-match winning streak snapped in falling to 10-6 overall and 2-4 in the Northeast-10 Conference, while the Hawks are now 6-12 and 1-4.

Sophomore Kelsey Flaherty (Cold Spring, N.Y./Haldane) had 10 kills and 15 digs for Saint Michael's, while senior Chelsey Covitz (Marshfield, Mass./Marshfield) collected 11 kills and three blocks. Classmate Brianna Saunders (Litchfield, N.H./Campbell) added seven kills, and senior Jess McLeod (Medfield, Mass./Medfield) notched 37 assists and 15 digs. First-year Natalie Moore (Burnt Hills, N.Y./Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake) totaled 33 digs, junior Hillary Miller (Plattsburgh, N.Y./Plattsburgh/Colby-Sawyer) posted 11, and senior Lindsay Phenix (Tewksbury, Mass./Central Catholic) contributed three blocks.

Senior Kyla Gustavson (Nashua, N.H./Nashua North) totaled 12 kills and 27 digs for Saint Anselm, and classmate Vivian Fitzgerald (Winfield, Ill./Aurora Central Catholic) added 10 kills. Junior Natalie Steinwart (Aurora, Ill./Aurora Central Catholic) posted 42 assists and 12 digs, and classmate junior Melissa Jewett (Newton, Mass./Newton North) turned in 27 digs.

In the opening set, neither team led by more than two points until Covitz dropped consecutive kills to give her team an 11-8 lead, sparking a set-ending 16-7 run. The Purple Knights scored two of the first three points in set No. 2 before Saint Anselm countered with an 11-1 run, eventually extending its lead to 13 points en route to tying the match. During the third set, Saint Michael's recorded the first five points, eventually forging an 11-point lead on four occasions.

The visitors grabbed a 4-1 edge in the fourth set before Saint Anselm went on a 13-4 run, pulling ahead by a 14-8 count. Saint Michael's snuck within 14-12 and 15-13, but the Hawks slowly extended their advantage to seven twice. Down 23-16, the Purple Knights scored seven straight points, knotting the score at 23-23 and 24-24 on kills by sophomore Candace Washington (New Carrollton, Md./Parkdale), but Saint Anselm scored the final two points to escape and once again tie the match. The hosts scored the first two points of the fifth set and never looked back.

The Purple Knights host Pace University on Friday at 7 p.m. to begin a two-match home weekend.