DURHAM, N.H. – Kirsten Bates (Calgary, Alberta) recorded a team-high 13 kills and six digs, but the University of New Hampshire volleyball team lost 3-1 to Binghamton University in Saturday evening’s Senior Day match at Lundholm Gymnasium. The set scores were 25-12, 21-25, 25-15, 25-22.
UNH ends the season at 7-21 overall and 4-8 in America East. Binghamton, which had already secured the second seed in the upcoming conference tournament, improved to 15-13, 9-2.
Lindsay Fogarty (Pleasanton, Calif.) tallied nine kills and a team-high .238 hitting percentage for the Wildcats. Kate Uitti (Pinckney, Mich.) finished with 34 assists and 10 digs. Lucia Bridova (Bratislava, Slovakia), the lone senior on the UNH roster, had a match-high 14 digs – as well as one kill – as the libero.
The Bearcats were led offensively by Anna Lejina (18 kills; .359 hitting percentage) and Michelle McDonough (12; .259) with Lindsey Mueller setting the attack with 39 assists. McDonough recorded a match-high 10 blocks and also contributed a team-best 11 digs. Mueller followed with six blocks and Lejina had four.
In Set 1, UNH led 8-6 on a kill by Bates but the visitors won 11 consecutive points behind McDonough, who had three kills and five blocks during the run. The ‘Cats won three of the next four points to close within 17-12, but they would get no closer the rest of the set.
In the second set, neither team led by more than two points until Binghamton established a 12-9 advantage. New Hampshire called time out with the visitors holding a 16-13 lead and went on a 5-0 run on the strength of two service aces by Pauline Acres (Manhattan Beach, Calif.), who finished the match with seven kills and eight digs.
With the score then tied at 19, consecutive blocks by the UNH tandems of Justine Elliott (Michellville, Md.) and Amy Keding (Northbrook, Ill.) and Elliott and Bates gave the ‘Cats a 21-19 lead. Binghamton rallied to tie the score, 21-21, but three kills by Bates – and one in between by Acres – leveled the match at one set apiece.
The Bearcats raced out to a 6-1 lead in Set 3. UNH responded with a 7-3 run to close within 9-8. Binghamton then surged ahead 17-12 and went on to take a 20-13 lead, at which point the Wildcats called their second timeout of the set. The teams exchanged points to push the score to 21-15 and the visitors closed out the set with four straight points.
In Set 4, a pair of aces by Lejina gave Binghamton an early 4-1 lead. The ‘Cats rallied to take a 9-8 lead but BU responded with a 4-1 run to go back in front, 12-10. UNH pulled even at 12, and the teams exchanged points to push the score to 22-22. A block by the Bearcat duo of McDonough and Ashley Allen (eight kills; three blocks) prompted a New Hampshire timeout. BU closed out the match, however, on back-to-back kills by Sandra DeVito (seven kills) and Allen.
Bridova ends her four-year UNH career with 1,037 assists to rank seventh on the program's all-time list. Her career accolades include two-time America East Academic Honor Roll.