DURHAM, N.H. - Junior outside hitter Alyson Coler (Monte Sereno, Calif.) recorded a match-high 16 kills to lead the University of New Hampshire women's volleyball team to Tuesday night's 3-0 victory against the University of Connecticut at Lundholm Gymnasium. The game scores were 30-28, 20-22, 30-28.
UNH won its fourth consecutive match to improve to 9-9 while UConn is now 5-9. With the 16 kills, Coler increased her career total to 990 and will become the third Wildcat to reach the 1,000 kill plateau with 10 more. She will be the fastest player to attain that milestone if she accomplishes the feat in the Wildcats' next match, which is Wednesday, Oct. 2 (7 p.m.) at Boston College.
In Game 1, the Huskies built a 16-11 lead behind the strong play of Jamie Hadenfeldt (11 kills) and Sarah Walton (nine). The Wildcats rallied within one point, 16-15, and pulled even at 19 before taking their first lead of the match, 20-19, on a UConn hitting error. A UNH service error tied the game, but a kill by Coler - one of seven in the opening game - ignited a six-point run that gave the 'Cats a lead they would not lose again.
The visitors did rally, however, and closed the gap to 28-27, then fended off one game point at 29-27 but a Lauren Knight (Cape Cod, Mass.) kill gave the 'Cats a 1-0 lead in the match.
In Game 2 with UNH leading 11-10, the Wildcats won seven of the next eight points, including two on service aces by Jen Williams (Mountain View, Calif.), to build a commanding 18-11 advantage. UConn was unable to trim the deficit below six points the rest of the way.
The Huskies took an 8-5 lead in Game 3 and extended the advantage to 16-10, but the 'Cats won six consecutive points to tie the score and eventually wrested away the lead at 22-21. With the teams tied at 28 and UConn serving, a kill by Coler gave UNH match point at 29-28 and Natasha Otte (Plymouth, N.H.) recorded a kill on the next point to end the match.
Knight finished with 14 kills while Erin Ludwig (Franklin Lakes, N.J.) registered 37 assists and a match-high 18 digs.
Melissa Wooley (11 kills) and Christine Lambert (10) were part of a balanced attack that was quarterbacked by Julie Erbez (39 assists). Walton led the Huskies in digs with 16.
The next Wildcat home match is Oct. 11 vs. Hartford. Match time at Lundholm Gymnasium is 7 p.m.