Women’s volleyball ends losing streak with win against UNCW

Jordan Baron, sports editor

Northeastern women’s volleyball ended their three-game losing skid with a 3-2 win over UNCW Friday night.

The Huskies (8-9, 2-3 CAA) moved ever so slightly closer to the .500 mark, picking up their second conference victory. The Seahawks host a better overall record than NU, but find themselves now with four conference losses out of five games.

The first set began with back-and-forth scoring until the Huskies put together two in a row to take a 5-3 lead early on. Two 3-0 runs for the Seahawks brought them right back into the game, however, and UNCW took a 10-8 lead later on. After going up by 5 points at 14-9, the Huskies put together their own 3-0 run to tighten the gap again at 14-12. The Seahawks kept their small lead into the late parts of the set, before going on a 3-0 scoring run to go up 22-17. UNCW went on to win the set 25-21.

If the first set was close, the second was even closer. The two squads battled on the court, and entered the midway point with a 15-14 score with the edge to NU. The Seahawks then went on a 4-0 run to take a 18-15 lead, and found themselves leading 20-17 late in the set before the Huskies put together their own 4-0 run to take the lead by a one point margin at 21-20. A 3-0 run helped to finish off the Seahawks, as NU took the set 25-22.

UNCW started off the third set well after going down 6-4 by putting up a 3-0 run and taking a 7-6 lead. Later, with the Seahawks now leading 16-13, the Huskies put together their own 3-0 run to tie the game. Both teams put up one more point to tie the game again at 17 before UNCW put up four straight 2-0 runs to end the set 25-20.

Down by a set and facing their fourth loss in a row, the Huskies gritted their teeth and pushed forward against the strong Seahawk offensive. Up 7-4 in the fourth set, NU put together an impressive 5-0 run powered by two kills from junior outside hitter Athena Ardila to take an 11-4 lead. Later, up 14-6, the Huskies matched their previous run with another 5-0 to go up 18-6. A final 5-0 run late in the game powered the Huskies to a commanding 25-10 set win.

With the match tied up and the momentum on the side of the Huskies, the NU players set their eyes on a match win. The fifth set started off close before the Huskies put together yet another 5-0 run powered by two kills from freshman outside hitter Evelyn Gonzalez to take a 9-5 lead. NU finished the set with a 4-0 run and won the final set 15-7, securing them the match win.

Gonzalez finished the match with 20 total kills, while Ardila finished with 14. Freshman outside hitter Erica Staunton also had 20 kills of her own, and senior middle-blocker Natalie Shollin put up 10 to continue her impressive season. Junior setter Samantha Shupe had 48 assists in the game along with two service aces.

The Huskies will look to continue their winning ways against Charleston (4-13) on Sunday afternoon.