Sacred Heart Upended by Northeastern 3-1

Dianis Mercado issued 16 kills vs. Bryant
Dianis Mercado issued 16 kills vs. Bryant

Fairfield, Conn.—The Sacred Heart Women's Volleyball Team fell 3-1 to Northeastern in the final game of the 2012 Beanpot Classic. With the loss, the Pioneers have a 1-2 record in the tournament, having defeated Holy Cross 3-0 Friday night, and lost to Alabama 3-1 earlier today.

Alissa Young (La Verne, Calif.) led all players with 26 kills. The sophomore hit .340 in the match with 26 kills on 53 attempts.

The first set opened with the teams exchanging points until, with the score at 3-2, Young stepped up to the service line and went on an eight-point service run allowing the Pioneers to take a big lead early on. The run was highlighted by two kills by rookie Karly Shockey (Chino Hills, Calif.) and one by senior middle blocker Johanna Osvenek (London, Ontario). Despite the six-point lead, Northeastern tied the score at eleven on Megan Kehoe's service ace. The score tied once more at twelve before the Huskies took a lead they would not relinquish, claiming the set 25-21.

The second set was close beginning to end, with neither team ever leading by more than three points and the lead changing eleven times. SHU was the first to reach the 20-point mark, on Natalie Kridel's (Huntington Beach, Calif.) kill, assisted by Alisa Mesa (Long Beach, Calif.), just one of Mesa's fifteen assists in the set. The two-point lead, 20-18, was not surrendered for the rest of the set as Sacred Heart won 25022. The Pioneers combined for a .324 hitting percentage en route to their only win of the match. Young and Shockey both hit .500, Young with seven kills on twelve attempts and Shockey with five kills on eight attempts.

Despite always being close, the third set was Northeastern's from the start. After Jillian Briner recorded a kill for the first point of the game, the Huskies maintain the lead all the way to the 25-18 victory. That momentum carried into the final set. Although the Pioneers came out strong, earning the first three points of the set with a three-point service run by Sara Fernandez (Guaynabo, Puerto Rico), past the 8-8 tie Sacred Heart never held another lead. Osvenk hit .500 in the 25-16 loss, with three kills on six attempts, while Mesa added another 11 assists to make her match-tally 45.

The Pioneers head west next weekend for the Aztec Challenge hosted by University of California San Diego.