Beavers Pull Away from Panthers to Extend Winning Streak to Seven
BABSON PARK, Mass.—Senior Shannon Roseen (Malden, Mass.), junior Kristin Carosotto (East Greenwich, R.I.) and sophomore Allie Puccio (New Hartford, N.Y.) all finished with eight kills apiece to lead Babson College to a 3-0 (25-22, 25-15, 25-16) victory over visiting Middlebury College on the opening night of the New England Challenge inside Staake Gymnasium.
Babson, which is fourth in the initial NCAA regional rankings, improves to 18-5 on the year with its seventh consecutive win. Middlebury, which has dropped two straight matches, slips to 12-5 overall.
Carosotto led all players with seven blocks, sophomore Sabrina Lechner (Novato, Calif.) contributed six kills and three blocks, and junior Elizabeth Cameron (El Dorado Hills, Calif.) finished with 30 assists, 10 digs and two blocks for the Beavers. Senior Abby Beecher (Pittsford, N.Y.) tied for match-high honors with 17 digs in the win.
Senior Isabel Sessions (Chicago, Ill.) led all players with 11 kills to go along with 11 digs, while classmate Sarah Staver (Manhattan Beach, Calif.) chipped in with seven kills for the Panthers. Senior Chellsa Ferdinand (Queens, N.Y.) dished out 18 assists and junior Gigi Alper (Mill Valley, Calif.) finished with 17 digs.
The opening set featured 10 ties and three lead changes with the largest margin for either side coming at 14-10 on a kill by Puccio. Middlebury pulled even at 17-17 on a kill by first-year Jane Nelson (Hopkins, Minn.) and the teams traded the next eight points before the Green and White put the game away with two kills and two blocks from Carosotto.
Trailing 10-9 in the second set, Puccio and senior Catherine Hunter (Duxbury, Mass.) combined for four kills in the span of six points to give Babson a 15-12 lead. The Panthers pulled within 18-15 on a kill by Sessions, but the Beavers followed with seven consecutive points, including kills by Roseen and Hunter, to close out the stanza.
The hosts were dominant in the third set using 12 kills, four blocks and four service aces to finish off the match. Lechner put away four kills and Carosotto added four blocks to help the Beavers take their largest lead of the night at 20-8 on a kill by Puccio. Middlebury used a four-point run to get as close as 22-16 late, but kills by Lechner and Hunter followed by a ace from Cameron sealed the victory.
Both teams return to action on Saturday at MIT beginning at 11 a.m. The Beavers will face Tufts and Williams, while the Panthers take on the host Engineers and Springfield.
• The Beavers are now 2-3 all-time against Middlebury.
• Babson has won 14 straight home matches against non-conference opponents and has won 31 of its last 32 matches overall inside Staake Gymnasium.
• With 17 digs on Friday night, Beecher is now third on the Beavers' all-time list with 1,190 for her career.
• With Friday's victory, Babson improves to 33-0 going back to the start of last season when hitting at least .200.