Mountaineers drop NECC battle to Elms

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BENNINGTON — The Southern Vermont College volleyball team won the first set in a matchup against Elms at the Mountaineer Athletic Center, but the Blazers roared back for three straight sets to score a 3-1 victory on Tuesday night.

"They are a good team with lots of weapons, and they attacked us from all over the floor," said SVC coach Pat Robidoux. "We didn't do a good job moving on from point to point."

SVC took the first set, 28-26, before Elms won Set 2, 25-20, Set 3, 25-13 and Set 4, 25-14.

SVC got done in the first set, 19-14, before Robidoux took a timeout. It spurred on the Mountaineers, who scored the next eight points on the strength of outside hitter Liv Sowles and the serving of Sarah Billow to take a 22-19 lead.

Elms tied it with three straight points and the teams went back and fourth, with Elms' Danielle Redding scoring one of her team-leading 20 kills to give them a short-lived advantage before Kemly Derby tied it again. SVC scored the next two to win the set.

Sowles had 21 kills for the Mountaineers with only five errors in 70 total attacks on the night, while Nikki Ramirez had 10 kills in 42 attacks.

"Liv and Nikki are very special players, we're fortunate to have them, they have worked hard to come in to a team that didn't win a conference game last year, they've become the offensive centerpiece for us," Robidoux said. "It's not the finished product, the grind is real, we're always trying to get better."

SVC tied the second set early at 9-9, but ended up on the wrong end of a run to be down 20-13 before a timeout. The teams traded points for the rest of the set en route to the Blazers' 25-20 win.

In the third set, SVC had a 7-6 lead before Elms scored 14 of the next 16 points to pull away and in the fourth set, the Mountaineers couldn't get going in the right direction en route to the 25-14 set defeat.

SVC is 2-2 in the New England Collegiate Conference, looking up at Elms and Lesley.

"We're not worried about last year, we've moved on with a different unit, we look at one match at a time and Lesley is next," Robidoux said.


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