Volleyball streak comes to an end in nonconference showdown on the road

Sean McManus

The women’s volleyball team ended its four-game winning streak with a 3-2 loss on Sunday against Fordham at the Rose Hill Gym in Bronx, N.Y. The loss brings the Wildcats to 16-7 overall, 5-3 in Big East play.

The ‘Cats dropped the first set 25-17 to the Rams. It was tied at 14-14 before a kill by Michelle Keathley sparked the Rams to rally late and close the set on an 11-3 run. Villanova recorded six errors and 13 kills in the first set.

Despite cutting down on errors in the second set, Villanova lost by a score of 25-16. The power up front for Fordham proved to be too much, as the Rams managed 15 kills. ‘Nova fought to bring the set to 17-16, a one point advantage for the Rams, but was not able to fend off an 8-1 rally by Fordham.

The ‘Cats came out firing on all cylinders in the third set and defeated the rams 25-16. Villanova took a 6-2 lead out of the gate on kills by senior outside hitter Elysse Studzinski, sophomore outside hitter Kara Chatham and a few fortunate service errors by the Rams. The Wildcats found themselves tied at 17-17 and closed the set with an 8-2 run of their own. Villanova took the third set with 14 kills and five errors.

Determined to not go down without a fight, Villanova notched a 26-24 win in the fourth set that proved to be a nail-biter. ‘Nova found itself down 10-6 early on but battled back to knot the score at 20 apiece. The Wildcats relied upon sophomore middle blocker Maggie Mergen and her five kills, none more important than the back-to-back kills to win the set.

However, Villanova was unable to complete the comeback, dropping the fifth and final set 15-9. The ‘Cats managed five kills and one error in the deciding set. They were unable to contain the Fordham front line, as the Rams exploded for 11 kills in the fifth set to seal the victory.

The Wildcats will look to get back on track with a win at home against conference opponent South Florida tomorrow at 7 p.m. in the Jake Nevin Field House.