Volleyball battles to 3-1 win over Sacred Heart in season opener

Costello registered seven digs, six kills and two aces

Aug 30, 2013

Box Score

Worcester, Mass. – Lo Hathaway tallied a match-high 12 digs, while Melissa Rigo led the #Seawolves with eight kills as the Stony Brook volleyball team handed Coley Pawlikowski a win in her first match as a Div. 1 head coach with a 3-1 (22-25, 25-22, 29-27, 25-20) victory over Sacred Heart in the Crusader Classic hosted by Holy Cross Friday night. 

Hannah Dolan dished out 24 assists and recorded a match-best six aces and Kaitlin Costello chipped in six kills for Stony Brook (1-0). Taylor Gillie and Rigo posted three blocks apiece.

Marie Zimmerman paced Sacred Heart (0-1) with 13 kills.


Coach’s Reaction

“This was a really good match for us. We trailed in every single set, but our kids were never afraid. They responded under pressure and kept pushing. Kathy Fletcher had an ace in the fourth set that was clutch. Lo Hathaway was our anchor on the service team and defense. Hannah Dolan did a great job spreading the offense, and Kaitlin Costello and Melissa Rigo also played consistently well. Taylor Gillie was key on the block and worked hard to touch the ball.”



-- Pawlikowski 

Key Moments

First Set

The Seawolves took a 20-17 edge in the opening set after a kill by Rigo, but the Pioneers rallied to knot the match at 20 when Sarah Krufka scored on a kill. Dolan helped Stony Brook regain the lead, 22-20, on a pair of aces, but Sacred Heart went on a 5-0 run to take the frame, 25-22, despite a team-high four kills by Rigo.

Second Set

In the second stanza, it was Stony Brook that battled back from a late deficit. Trailing 18-15, Dolan registered back-to-back service aces to close the gap to one, 20-19. Though she next committed a service error that gave the ball back to the Pioneers, Dolan set up Stephanie McFadden on the ensuing rally to again make it a one-point contest, 21-20.  SB went ahead, 22-21, on a pair of errors against Sacred Heart. The two squads traded the final four points of the set, with the Seawolves winning it on a kill by Rigo.

Third Set

Stony Brook trailed, 22-21, late in the third frame, but an attack error on Krufka and an ace by Gillie gave the Seawolves a 23-22 lead and sparked an exciting finish. Krufka scored on a kill, but the Pioneers committed a service error to keep Stony Brook’s lead at one, 24-23.

SB could not take advantage of the miscue as Dianis Mercado registered a kill and Allison Riggs tallied a service ace for SHU to give the Pioneers a 25-24 advantage and a set-point opportunity. McFadden and Fletcher stormed back by recording kills to swing the momentum in Stony Brook’s favor, 26-25; however, consecutive points by the Pioneers gave them a 27-26 edge. Two straight errors by Sacred Heart put Stony Brook in front, 28-27, and Fletcher and Rigo teamed up for a block as the Seawolves won a thrilling third set, 29-27, and went up 2-1 in match.

Fourth Set

SB got off to a slow start in the fourth stanza, and Sacred Heart jumped out to a 12-7 lead. A kill by Dolan and multiple miscues by the Pioneers helped the Seawolves climb back into the frame and knot the score at 14 as another seesaw affair ensued. Fletcher tallied a pair of key points late, the first on a kill and the second on a service ace, to give SB a four-point lead, 22-18, and the Seawolves held on to win the set, 25-20, and the match, 3-1. 

By the Numbers

  • Costello recorded seven digs, and Rigo finished with five. Both also tallied two aces.
  • McFadden notched four kills, and Shelby Tietjen, Gillie and Fletcher had three apiece in the balanced offensive effort.
  • Stony Brook out-blocked Sacred Heart, 7-4, and also held a 14-11 edge in aces.
  • SHU committed 23 service errors.

News and Notes

  • The Seawolves improve to a perfect 9-0 against the Pioneers.
  • The win ends a six-year losing streak in season openers for Stony Brook. SB last won its first match of the season when it bested LIU, 3-2, in 2006.
  • Fletcher, a versatile redshirt sophomore who can play on the outside, right side or in the middle, competed in her first match as a Seawolf.

Next Up

Stony Brook is back at it tomorrow with a pair of matches against Holy Cross and Manhattan at 11 a.m. and 3 p.m., respectively.