On Friday, November 2nd, the Wildcats of the University of New Hampshire visited the Reich Family Pavilion volleyball court to take on the home Hartford Hawks in an America East contest.
In Game 1, Hartford pulled out to a 1-0 lead, and added to it when Sarah Rasor came up with the service ace. A serve out of bounds put the Wildcats on the board, but the visitors knocked a ball out as well and it was 3-1 Hartford.
It was Lindsay Fogarty that touched off a UNH scoring run with a huge spike from the front line. A Hartford double hit error tied the game at 3, and Toni Barnas picked up New Hampshire’s 4th point with a spike to the back corner of the Hartford defense. A pair of Hawk errors, and another Barnas kill, put the visitors out to a 3-7 lead.
The Wildcats smacked a ball into the net to give UHa a fourth point, but three home team errors in a row put UNH up 4-10. Hartford called a timeout, and Jennifer Monroy emerged from it with a spike to put the Hawks back within 5.
Rasor and Katie O’Hara combined on a block to a gap in the center of the UNH defense, and the pair picked up another block on the following rally as well. With the score 7-10 the teams traded point before UNH picked up a pair of kills including an Emmy Blouin set in for a point. A UHart spike out of bounds put UNH up 8-14, and Fogarty had another spike which rebounded off the D and out. The scoring ended when the Wildcats served into the net, but the lull was momentary as Fogarty came up with two spikes for two more points, and Jeanne Czipri took advantage of a Hartford set sailing over the net which she tapped back in. It was now 9-18 and Hartford called another time out.
The scoring continued for UNH though as a Fogarty spike landed just in bounds and that point was sandwiched between two errors by the home team. Jennifer Monroy smashed a huge spike in to end the visitor scoring run ad the score was now 10-21. The teams went back and forth in scoring including a variety of errors, and Hartford’s Erin Macro tapping a set over to a gap in the front of the UNH defensive line. With the score now 12-23, the Wildcats picked up a big defensive save from nearly in the seats, and a UHa two hit error afterwards gave them the point.
On the next play a Wildcat dived to save a ball, but to no avail as O’Hara tapped a kill in for the 13th home point. Their America East competitors took off on another scoring run when Barnas spiked it in, and Emmy Blouin, Kate Uitii, and Jessica Compton combined a huge block. Another tap over the net put UNH within 3 of the game win. Barnas picked up a service ace when her serve bounced off the defense and out of bounds, but a serve into the net returned the ball to UHa and gave them a point. The score was now 14-28. Hartford however served into the net as well and it was 14-29.
With game point at hand, UNH spiked a shot out of bounds, and then hit into the net. Alyse Lahti came up with a good defensive save for the visitors, but Megan Schauffele had a huge spike to put the score at 17-29. Hartford was unable to hold off Fogarty ending the game with a spike that hit off the blockers and gave the Wildcats the victory.
UNH 1, Hartford 0.
Game 2 began with Macro and Maddison Molyneux coming up with a block for point 1 for Hartford. UNH responded with a point of their own, and Fogarty notched another kill when she tapped in the ball to put UNH up 1-2. Molyneux’s response was a huge spike to tie the game back up. New Hampshire’s Czipri had a spike just in bounds following that, but O’Hara picked up a kill for UHa and the game was tied 3-3.
Forgarty touched off a brief Wildcat scoring run with a huge spike to the floor, and a pair of Hartford errors followed. When a UNH set flew over and of bounds, the Hawks were back within 2 with the score 4-6. Barnas came up with a spike for UNH, but Monroy responded or the home team with a spike and it was 5-7. It was Barnas that had the kill on the next play, and another point came New Hampshire’s way following that. With it 5-9, Macro picked up a point when her attack flew off the D and out. Monroy then picked up an ace when her serve hit off the first defender and no else touched it. Schauffele continued the UHart scoring run with a spike, and it was now 8-9. A UHa bad set gave a point to the visitors, but Hallie Fullagar spiked a kill for the Hawks and it was 9-10.
The Wildcats picked up a pair of points to pull to a 3 point lead, but Hartford responded with a misdirection. One of the players went up for a spike but faked it and a second set it over putting the UNH team out of position to return it. The visitors picked up a point on the following play to return the lead to 3, but an error on their side put the score at 11-13. Barnas tapped an attack in and Hartford picked up a two hit error, but UNH had an error of their own and the score was 12-15. O’Hara set the ball over to a hole in the defense, and a UNH spike out of bounds lead to a 14-15 score, but the Hawks served into the net and it was 14-16. This continued a back and forth with each side scrapping for points. Amidst some errors by both teams was O’Hara’s spike, and Macro spiking a ball off the defense to the floor, as well as UNH’s Compton smashing an attack in. When a delay occurred due to some sort of referee issue the score had risen to 17-18.
Following the delay Emmy Blouin spiked a kill for UNH, and Lahti had a service ace, but a Macro spike deflected off the blue and white and out. The Wildcats picked up another point, but it was Macro again with a spike to make the score 19-21. A pair of Hartford errors extended the Wildcat lead to 19-23 and a time out was called, but Barnas picked up another kill for her team and it was 19-24. O’Hara tapped an attack in to bring the Hawks back within 4, but a block from Forgarty extended the lead again. O’Hara responded with another tap for a kill, and Monroy found a corner to spike a ball into in order to end a big rally. Compton came up with a block on the following play though and the score was 22-26. A time out was called.
Hartford would pick up a point when play resumed, but a block of bounds put New Hampshire within 3, and a Wildcat spike made the gap between them and victory 2. Monroy had a spike in bounds to put the score at 24-28, but a serve into the net and a Fogarty block gave UNH the last two points they needed to win the game. UNH 2, Hartford 0.
Game 3 began with Hartford’s Lindsey Ford knocking a ball in for a point. The Wildcats set a ball out of bounds and UHa had a 2-0 lead, though the New Hampshire visitors would be on the board after the next rally. With the score 2-1, UNH failed to block a ball and it was 3-1, though Lindsay Fogarty picked up a kill when she spiked an attack just in bounds though on the next play a spike out of bounds by the blue and white gave Hartford a 4-2 lead.
Serves would determine the next two points, as the Hawks served into the net, and Sara Heldman scored an ace for UNH on her serve. Molyneaux regained the lead for Hartford with a spike, though Compton and Uitti combined on a block to tie it back up for UNH. A big rally ensued at 5-5 until Blouin spiked it in to end the rally and give the Wildcats the lead. It would be Blouin again on the next point when her attack flew off the defenders and out of bounds. The Wildcats would misfire on a spike to make it 6-7, but a pair of UHart spike out of bounds brought the score to 6-9.
After Macro tapped a ball in UNH committed a two hit error trying to return it, though Hartford suffered their own 2 hit penalty. Fogarty continued her scoring ways with a tap off the blockers who deflected it out of bounds. It was at this point that I noted that both Hartford Libero Sarah Boss, and her UNH counterpart Alyse Lahti had a lot of good plays throughout the match.
Ford tapped a ball from the UHa right to the defense’s right and it hit in for a point, and a UNH error put the Hawks back within 2 as the score became 9-11. Two Hartford errors would put the lead back at 4 before it was Fogarty again with a big spike from the net to put the score at 9-14. Hallie Fullagar stopped the scoring run when she smashed a spike through the blockers to the floor. The Hawks spike a shot out of bounds though, and it was 10-15 prior to Barnas spiking a kill through the UHa block. Though O’Hara responded with a spike to floor, and Monroy added her own spike off the blockers to make the score 12-16. Hartford picked up another point when UNH knocked a ball out of bounds. The scoring run was ended by Barnas when her smash flew by the D to the floor. Added to that was a trio of Hartford errors, and the score had risen to 13-20, when a time out was called.
Monroy came out of the play stoppage and tapped in a point, though UNH’s Laura Yegge responded with a spike and Barnas had a service ace to put the lead at 14-22. Monroy came up with another kill, and Ford added a block to pull within 6. With the score 16-22, a big rally ensued and Hartford put up some amazing D to put the ball in play until Macro blocked a shot in. Blouin put a stop to the scoring run when she spiked a shot in, but a serve into the net resulted in a score of 18-23.
The Wildcats picked up three points starting with a Forgarty spike off a block, and a pair of Hartford errors. A serve out of bounds behind the back line put the score at 19-26, and Hartford kill pushed the score to 20-26. Blouin spiked an attack in for New Hampshire’s 27th point. A spike out of bounds lead to a 21-27 score, but Lahti set a ball over that rolled off a Hawk attempt at a set to put UNH within 2. O’Hara smashed a hit to a gap and the diving defender couldn’t get it, though a two hit error resulted in UNH’s 29th point, and another UHart error ended the game and the match 22-30. UNH 3, Hartford 0.
(Based on eyewitness account verified against official play by play.)