WRITTEN BY BRYAN FONSECA
The Farleigh Dickinson Knights (9-12, 2-4) certainly had their hands full, but were able to hold-off a feisty St. Francis Terriers team (3-19, 0-6) in straight sets this afternoon.
With the loss, the Knights edge closer to the middle of the pack in the Northeast Conference, while the Terriers remain in last place in spite of their gutsy efforts.
Today was no exception as the Terriers were very challenging, but the Knights showcased their ability to finish strong in each set, sweeping their way to a second NEC victory.
In the game’s first set, the Knights were off to a quick start, mounting a 5-0 lead.
The action then saw more balance as the Terriers fought their way back, narrowing the gap to a two-point margin.
At seemingly every turn, it appeared as if the Terriers would emerge from behind and take a late lead, but the Knights outlasted their Brooklyn foes en route to a 25-20 set one victory.
Set number two was more of the same, minus the red-hot start from the Knights.
The Terriers were in it the entire way, but the Knights seemed to have a bit more gas left in the tank as the sets conclusion drew near.
Despite being in scoring range, the Terriers couldn’t come up with the late surge they needed to steal the second set, and the Knights finished them off winning 25-18.
In the game’s third set, the Terriers presented an even tougher challenge from the jump.
It was the Terriers who were the aggressors this time around by playing out to an early 5-2 lead.
The Knights quickly tied it up with three unanswered points.
The Terriers quickly grabbed another short lead, and eventually went ahead 10-7 shortly their after, putting more pressure on the Knights in the early going.
After several lead changes, the Knights broke a 15-15 tie with two consecutive points. Momentum shifted in their direction, and the Terriers felt obligated to call timeout.
Immediately out of the called timeout, the Terriers tied the game at 17.
The Knights then responded with five consecutive points, and with a late 22-17 lead, it become increasingly more difficult for the Terriers to mount a late comeback.
The Terriers did manage to put together a 5-2 scoring run, and while trailing 24-22, they had put themselves in position to steal the third set.
Their attempt however, was ultimately denied as the Knights took the third set 25-22.
In doing so, the three-set sweep was complete.
Offensively, the Knights were led by sophomore and freshman outside hitters; Alex Lolland and Rebecca Sabol. Lolland and Sabol combined for 18 kills, finishing tied for the game-high with nine each.
Senior setter Allison Butler continued to be a centerpiece in the Knights offense as she racked up 25 a game-high assists this afternoon.
Senior middle hitter Maggie Niu and junior middle hitter Niehely Sosa also combined for 18 kills in the same fashion, finishing with nine apiece.
Junior outside hitter Milica Mladjenovic made a huge contribution by dishing out a season-high 19 assists in today’s game.
Still in search of their first NEC win, the Terriers will look to snap their skid tomorrow afternoon when they face the Sacred Heart Pioneers in Fairfield, Connecticut.