Copyright 2016; Wilmington University. All rights reserved. Photo of Briley's record breaking kill in the fifth set on Friday night, taken by Frank Stallworth.
NEWARK, Del. - - The Wilmington University volleyball team couldn't close out Chestnut Hill, as the Griffins battled back to take the final two sets for the 3-2 Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference South Division contest on Friday night at the WU Athletics Complex.
Set scores for the match were 19-25, 25-20, 25-17, 22-25, and 10-15.
The loss overshadows a record-breaking night by the Wildcats' (6-8, 3-2 CACC) Allison Briley, as she became the program's all-time leader in kills, breaking the record with her 17th kill of the night. She needed to get to 1,199 career kills to break 2015 graduate and former teammate Kaitlin DiGiacinto's mark set last year. Briley finished with 19 kills on the night and now has 1,201 career terminations.
After dropping the first set on Friday night, the Wildcats used a 7-3 spurt to break a 12-12 tie in the second set. The Wildcats didn't allow the Griffins (6-9, 4-3 CACC) to earn back-to-back points the rest of the way and Rebecca Rawlinson picked up a kill on set point to tie the match, 25-20.
The third set was determined with a 5-0 run by the Wildcats, turning a 15-13 lead into a 20-13 advantage. The Griffins closed the gap to 21-17, but a Briley kill, a Jenna Brown ace, and a Jill Braunsberg kill put the Wildcats ahead, 2-1, in the match with the 25-17 set three win.
Trailing 13-10 in the fourth set, the Wildcats went on a 7-2 run to take a 17-15 lead, but the Griffins stemmed the tide and regained an 18-17 lead with a 3-0 run of their own. An Eile Harris kills tied the set, but then the Griffins scored back-to-back points en route to a 5-1 run and never looked back. The Wildcats saved two set points, but the Griffins forced a fifth set, 25-22.
The fifth set started in back and forth action, with Harris bringing the Wildcats to within 6-5 early on. But the Griffins picked up back-to-back points with the Wildcats in the net, switching sides with an 8-5 lead. They continued with the next two points as well, getting a solo block for the 10-5 lead. Briley's record-breaking kill brought the Wildcats to within 11-7, but then she rattled off back-to-back kills and Miranda Shaw produced a service ace to bring the Wildcats to within 12-10. But again, the Griffins stemmed the tied and took the final three points of the match, finishing off the Wildcats, 15-10.
Braunsberg finished a kill shy of an elusive triple-double, collecting nine kills, 18 assists, and a team high 28 digs. The freshman also finished with a match high four service aces. Briley finished with a double-double with 19 kills and 16 digs while Shaw added another double-double as well with 19 assists and 11 digs. Rawlinson chipped in with six kills but finished with three solo blocks and two block assists to go along with three aces. Addalyn Flores led the back row with 24 digs for the Wildcats.
The Wildcats out blocked the Griffins, 13 to 6, but Chestnut Hill was able to collect more digs, 123 to 105. The Griffins ended up out-hitting the Wildcats, .182 to .166, as well.