Golden Bears Rally Before Falling to Framingham State in Five Sets

Junior Kierah Parker led the Golden Bears with 16 kills in Western New England's 3-2 loss to Framingham State on Thursday. (Photo by Rachael Margossian)
Junior Kierah Parker led the Golden Bears with 16 kills in Western New England's 3-2 loss to Framingham State on Thursday. (Photo by Rachael Margossian)

Parker records career-highs in kills (16) and block assists (7)

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (September 13, 2018) – The Western New England University volleyball team rallied to force a fifth set before falling to Framingham State University, 3-2 (25-21, 19-25, 25-23, 16-25, 15-11) on Thursday evening in non-conference action at the Alumni Healthful Living Center.

Top Performers
Junior middle blocker Kierah Parker (Middletown, Conn.) led the way for the Golden Bears, as she hit .556 and posted career-highs in both kills (16) and block assists (seven).

Senior captain Ashley Matthews (Salem, N.H.) also posted a 16-kill, 12-dig effort, while sophomore setter Jenna McCormack (Nashua, N.H.) distributed a career-high 53 assists.

Defensively, freshman libero Kiana Turner (South Hadley, Mass.) paced Western New England with 17 digs.

For Framingham State, freshman outside hitter Brandee Thomas (North Kingstown, R.I.) produced a match-high 17 kills, and senior setter Mackenzie Whalen (Norton, Mass.) finished with 45 kills and 17 digs.

Game Review
Trailing 7-6 in the opening set, the Rams won ten straight points to open up a 16-7 advantage. Western New England was able to chip away at its deficit and pull to within two (23-21) late, but Framingham State held on to take the set.

Western New England bounced back in set two, using a 7-0 run late in the frame to turn a 17-16 edge into a 24-16 cushion. The Golden Bears posted a 25-19 triumph to even the match.

Western New England, which faced a 24-17 deficit in the third frame, nearly came all the way back with a 6-0 run to make it a one-point game (24-23), but the Rams held on late to gain a 2-1 advantage in the match.

The Golden Bears came out hot in the fourth set and never looked back, posting a 25-16 win to force a fifth and final set.

Western New England trailed 4-1 early in the fifth set, before using a 7-1 run to take an 8-5 lead as the teams switched sides of the court. Framingham State took control from there, however, as the Rams pulled ahead with a 5-0 run en route to a 15-11 victory.

Notes
• Western New England hit a match-best .550 in the fourth set and .228 overall, while the Rams posted a .245 attack percentage.
• McCormack has now recorded a career-high for assists in consecutive matches, after handing out 45 in Tuesday's win at Elms.

Up Next
Western New England (1-8) will be on the road Saturday for a tri-match at Worcester State, while Framingham State (5-3) travels to Salve Regina for a tri-match.