WILMINGTON, North Carolina- Sophomore Paulette Grand Pre recorded 10 kills and a .421 hitting percentage to lead William & Mary to a 3-0 (25-20, 25-23, 25-20) victory over UNCW in Colonial Athletic Association volleyball action Saturday at Hanover Hall.
In the league opener for both programs, the Tribe improved to 9-5 on the season as it won its sixth straight match while the Seahawks slipped to 7-9. Both teams return to action Sept. 28 with CAA contests. UNCW is at Northeastern while William & Mary travel to Hofstra. Start times for both matches is set for 7 p.m.
Grand Pre was the only Tribe player to reach double figures as William & Mary benefitted from a balanced attack that saw five players finish with six or more spikes. Senior Molly Krull and sophomore Carolina Rivas dished out 17 and 15 assists, respectively, to pace the Tribe lineup to 40 kills and a .263 hitting percentage for the match. Freshman Dessi Koleva finished with a team-high 11 digs.
Senior Jennifer Mallard tallied 10 kills while junior Christi Laite and freshman Meredith Peacock notched seven spikes apiece for UNCW. Senior setter Natalie Lahaie dished out 27 assists and added seven digs. Junior libero Haley Collins recorded a game-high 13 digs as she became just the ninth player in program history to record 1,000 career bumps.
In a tight match that featured a total of 30 ties and 12 lead changes, William & Mary took the first set, 25-20, using a 9-4 spurt midway through the frame to break open a 16-all contest and post the five-point victory.
The second set saw the two sides battle through 13 ties and seven lead changes until a kill by Grand Pre and an attack error by the Seahawks would break a 23-all deadlock and give the Tribe a 25-23 triumph.
William & Mary held a 7-3 lead early in the third set, only to see the Seahawks bounce back with four unanswered points to tie the match at 7-all. The two sides would then proceed to trade points before a kill by sophomore Liz Brown with the score tied at 17-all ignited an 8-3 spurt that led the Tribe to a 25-20 win and the match.