Volleyball Powers Past Anna Maria in Straight Sets

Action photo of Lyons volleyball player, Loriya Thao.

SOUTH HADLEY, Mass. - A 14-kill effort from senior captain Jamesa Allen helped lift the Mount Holyoke College volleyball team to a 3-0 (25-10, 25-13, 25-11) victory over Anna Maria College in non-conference action on Thursday evening. With the win, the Lyons move to 6-4 overall, while the AMCats are now 1-8 on the season.

It was a close score to open the first set, but the homestanding Lyons took control with a 5-0 run for an 11-4 advantage. MHC used a number of runs throughout the set to add to its lead, including a 4-0 run to close out the set with consecutive kills from Allen (Orlando, Fla./Lake Nona), rookie Alaina Lee (Oakley, Calif./Berkeley) and senior outside hitter Isabell Linde (Red Bank, N.J./Red Bank Catholic), along with a set point service ace from senior libero Cameron Graham (Sarasota, Fla./The Out of Door Academy).

The second set saw the visiting AMCats take advantage of a number of Lyons errors to grab a 4-2 lead. The margin was cut down minutes later as MHC got a service ace from senior defensive specialist Loriya Thao (St. Paul, Minn./Como Park), followed by an Anna Maria Error to pull ahead by a 5-4 margin.

Anna Maria got kills from senior outside hitter Sarah Lathrop (Waterford, Conn./Waterford) and classmate/defensive specialist Victoria Falco (Marlborough, Mass./Marlborough) to tie the set twice, but a 6-0 run, which included two kills from rookie outside hitter Sarah Bishop (Rutland, Mass./Wachusett Regional) gave the home team a lead it would not relinquish.

The final set once again saw the visitors jump out to the quick lead as a kill and two service aces from first year outside hitter Taylor Hoffstedt (Lansborough, Mass./Mount Greylock Regional) made it a 4-0 advantage. MHC came roaring back with a 7-0 run, aided by two aces from Thao and kills from Linde, Allen and rookie outside hitter Gabi Davis (Keller, Texas/Keller) for a 7-4 margin.

Anna Maria benefited from several costly MHC errors down the stretch, closing the deficit to five (15-10) following a Lyons' service error, but the home team proved too much with a final 8-0 run to close out the set and match.

In addition to Allen, who also had five aces, a block solo and a block assist, the Lyons saw Linde nab five kills with a match-high eight digs. Bishop also had five kills with five digs, while senior captain Sarah Caggiano (Leonardtown, Md./Leonardtown) recorded five kills, an ace and a block assist. Sophomore setter Brayden Walden (McKinney, Texas/McKinney North) posted a match-best 19 assists, while Graham also had a match-best eight digs.

For Anna Maria, Lathrop and rookie middle hitter Chloe Vella (Leominster, Mass./Leominster) each had two kills. Hoffstedt notched three service aces, while rookie setter Julia Ramos (Orange, Mass./Athol) and Falco each posted five digs.

Mount Holyoke returns to action on Saturday when it travels to Emerson for a 12pm NEWMAC showdown. Anna Maria is also back on the court on Saturday, heading to Framingham State for an 11am match.