Daniel Webster Tops Lesley In NECC Tourney Opener, 3-0

Daniel Webster Tops Lesley In NECC Tourney Opener, 3-0

Nashua – Junior Chelsey Crawford (Westfield, Mass.) hit .571 with a match high nine kills and four service aces and junior Samantha Hill (Hudson, N.H.) added eight kills and seven digs guiding host and fourth-seeded Daniel Webster past fifth-seeded Lesley 3-0 in a quarterfinal match of the New England Collegiate Conference tournament Tuesday night at Mario Vagge Gymnasium.

Kate-Lynn Breault (Hudson, N.H.) added five kills, two aces and six digs and sophomore Ally Hayden (Bedford, N.H.) notched a career-best 27 assists as the Eagles (16-9), reached the NECC semifinal round for the fourth straight season - a program record for post-season success - with the 25-20, 25-18, 25-15 victory. It marked the first Eagle victory over the Lynx in three playoff meetings dating back three years.

Amanda Wilson (Merrimack, N.H.) and Maggie Belli (Miami, Fla.) each pulled in nine digs for the winners.

DWC advances to face top-seed and final four host Southern Vermont Friday at 6:00 p.m. with the winner advancing to the tournament championship slated for 2:00 p.m. Saturday at SVC.

Freshman Danielle Johnson (Waterford, Conn.) paced the Lynx (9-14) with seven kills and eight digs, while senior Kayla Henry (Saratoga Springs, N.Y.) added six kills and six digs in her final collegiate match.

Kaitlyn Miller (Leesport, Penn.) dished out 12 assists and two aces for Lesley, while Megan Ortwein (Shanghai, China) pulled in a match-high 13 digs and chipped in with three kills and Rachel Frederickson (Marston Mills, Mass.) added seven digs.

The Eagles hit just .189 on the night, but were aided by a Lesley offense that struggled, committing 24 hitting errors against 19 total kills.

The Eagles never trailed in the opener, jumping out to leads of 6-1 and 9-2 keyed by four kills from Crawford, who would knock down six in the set, while Hill would add six in the set.

Lesley didn't go quietly, whittling a 22-11 deficit down to 22-17 behind a kill from Henry and four Eagle unforced errors, but three more kills from Hill down the stretch of her own in the 25-20 win.

DWC came out firing again to start the second, using a 7-1 run early to turn a 3-2 deficit into a 10-4 lead with two kills from Crawford and seven points at the line from Hayden.

Lesley again made noise late, pulling back from a 21-13 deficit with a 5-1 run with three kills from Henry to make it a 22-18 game before three unforced errors closed out the set, 25-18.

Set three saw six ties and four lead swings early on before DWC took control with an 8-2 run midway through aided by two Breault kills and another from Emily Travis (Somerset, Mass.) that turned an 8-7 deficit into a 15-10 lead.

Kills from Travis and Crawford helped built the lead to 19-13 and the Eagles never let the Lynx closer than eight down the stretch.