Hilton Helps Lead Wesleyan Past Bowdoin, 3-0

Photo by Steve McLaughlin
Photo by Steve McLaughlin

MIDDLETOWN, Conn. – Nicole Hilton '18 recorded a team-high 11 kills with a .450 hitting percentage to help lead the Wesleyan University women's volleyball team to an impressive 3-0 sweep against Bowdoin College Friday night in Silloway Gymnasium.

In a crucial NESCAC matchup, the Cardinals snapped an eight-match losing streak against the Polar Bears by scores of 25-15, 25-23, 27-25. Wesleyan is now 18-4 overall and sits alone in second-place in the conference standings with an 8-1 mark. Bowdoin drops to 13-9 overall and 7-2 in league play.

HOW IT HAPPENED:

  • The Cardinals jumped out to a big lead early in the first set (6-1), but the visitors slowly cut into the deficit and got within two down the stretch, 16-14. However, a timeout by Wesleyan sparked a 7-0 run by the Cardinals as they pulled away with a commanding 25-15 win.
  • The second game went back-and-forth early as a kill from Stasie Litinsky '20 evened the score at 7-7. Bowdoin scored six of the next seven points to take a strong lead, but Wesleyan went on an incredible 12-5 run to go ahead by two (20-18). After a kill from Bowdoin's Sydney Salle knotted the game at 22-22, Hilton recorded back-to-back kills off assists from Grace Rose '21, and a Bowdoin service error two points later sealed the victory for the Cardinals.
  • The third and final set featured another thriller. Tied at 7-7, a kill from Gabby Bennett '20 sparked a 9-1 run by Wesleyan. The home team held a lead for the majority of the game until consecutive kills from the Polar Bears evened the score at 23-23. Salle put the visitor's ahead 25-24 with another kill, but an attack error followed by two-straight blocks from Wesleyan put the game away, 27-25.

INSIDE THE NUMBERS:

  • Hilton registered just two errors on 20 attempts, and Litinsky finished with eight kills and a .389 attack clip. Kaira Muraoka-Robertson '20 dished out a team-high 23 assists and finished with seven digs, while Phia Bellizzi '21 led the defensive efforts with 16 digs.
  • Bowdoin was led by Salle with 13 kills, while Ashley Williams finished with nine and Caroline Flaharty registered seven. Kate Kiser totaled a match-high 34 assists and added 10 digs, while Lisa Sheldon led all players with 17 digs.

BEYOND THE BOX SCORE:

  • With the win, Wesleyan snapped its eight-match losing streak against the Polar Bears and now leads the all-time series 20-9. Prior to tonight's match, the Cardinals' last win against Bowdoin occurred in the 2008 NESCAC Tournament.
  • Before to the start of tonight's match, Wesleyan honored its lone senior class member, Sarah Swenson. In 83 career matches, Swenson has amassed 649 kills, 166 digs, and 111 blocks.

UP NEXT:

  • The Cardinals host a crucial NESCAC showdown tomorrow, Oct. 28 at 1 p.m. against Tufts (19-5, 9-0 NESCAC). The winner will host the 2017 NESCAC Tournament Friday, Nov. 3 – Sunday, Nov. 5.
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