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Women’s Volleyball Captures Second Consecutive NE-10 Title

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Women’s Volleyball took the court for the second straight night to face off against cross-town rival Southern Connecticut State University for the NE-10 Conference Championship, winning the title for the second consecutive year.

In the first set Southern Connecticut came out strong, getting out to an early 5-1 lead. The Chargers looked rattled, but they had been in this situation many times before throughout the tournament. The Chargers countered with five points of their own while only allowing three points from the visiting Owls. The Chargers’ sixth point came on a vicious kill by sophomore Mallory Nowicki to get within two points. After a block by senior Lexi Peterson and a kill by Caroline Martins, the Chargers tied it up at nine.

The Chargers looked like they were going to run away with some momentum, but the Owls had other plans. Southern took the lead 15-13, but the Chargers got back into it tying it up at 16. Back and forth they went, point after point, close call after close call, neither team was able to gain an edge. After a timeout at 20 apiece, Southern made a run and they won the first set 25-22 on an ace.

The second set started out like the first and Charger Nation had gone quiet. It had seemed that Southern was able to counter every Charger attack. In fear of going down 2-0 for the first time in the tournament, coach Robin Salters called a timeout with Southern up 9-4. Coming out of the timeout, the Chargers kept battling and finally got their first lead of the set at 22-21. Southern was down but not out as they kept coming back to tie the game. With the Chargers up 25-24, they were able to get Southern on the ropes and win the set 26-24. This set was huge for the Chargers as they were able to tie the match up, but it killed the momentum for Southern as they weren’t able to get the defending champs down 0-2.

The third set was much like the first as the Chargers came out with little to no energy. Southern kept countering attacks and scoring points. The Owls got out to a 9-1 lead and left the Chargers in the dust. The Owls had looked like the better team throughout the set, and they proved it by only allowing 14 New Haven points. The Chargers couldn’t catch up as they lost the third set 25-14. The Owls took a commanding 2-1 lead with hopes of knocking off the top seeded champions in the fourth set.

New Haven had given Southern Connecticut all the opportunities in the world to close the deal, but the Owls couldn’t get it done. With Charger Nation screaming and cheering, New Haven took an 8-6 lead to start the fourth set. Southern stayed within two points of the Chargers for most of the set. Once the Chargers hit 20 points, they took control and never looked back. The Chargers scored five unanswered points finishing the set off with a kill by Peterson. The Chargers won the set 25-18 and tied the match up 2-2.

For the third game in a row, the Chargers were going to a fifth set. This one was for the trophy. With Charger Nation as loud as it has ever been, New Haven went to work. After tying the game up at two, the Chargers scored five straight points to go up 7-4. At this point Southern Connecticut’s Cinderella story was being re-written by the Chargers’ confidence and experience. The Chargers went up 11-9 midway through the set, and only allowed two more Owl points. The Chargers scored four more points winning the set 15-11. The Chargers captured their second consecutive NE-10 title and sixth overall. Leading the way for the Chargers was Freshman Kali Greathead who had 16 kills on the night while taking home the NE-10 Championship MVP Award. With the win the Chargers now advance to the NCAA Division II tournament.

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Women’s Volleyball Captures Second Consecutive NE-10 Title