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No. 12 Gannon Takes Down Women’s Volleyball in Straight Sets

Emma Wlostowski vs. Gannon on March 14, 2021.
Emma Wlostowski vs. Gannon on March 14, 2021.

With both squads hitting below .100 for the match, the D'Youville women’s volleyball team was defeated in straight sets by 12th-ranked Gannon on Sunday afternoon in the College Center Gymnasium. The Golden Knights used late runs in each set to pick up the sweep (25-13, 25-15 and 25-20) and remained perfect this spring at 6-0, while the Saints suffered their first loss of the season.

A pair of D'Youville outside hitters, freshman Kelly Cleversley and sophomore Brianna Damstetter, each tallied a match-high five kills. Gannon’s Madde Blake matched Cleversley and Milleville with five kills of her own in addition to four service aces, as her setter, Kaeli Kristensen, notched a match-high 18 assists. Freshman setter Emma Wlostowski posted a double-double for the Saints, tallying 13 assists and 10 digs to go with four aces, while senior libero Desiree Walters led both teams with 11 digs.

The Saints got a quick edge in the opening set at 4-1 thanks to a pair of kills by Damstetter, but the No. 12 Golden Knights fired back with seven-straight points to grab the own lead. D'Youville clawed back to make it 10-10 before Gannon once again got hot, going on a 9-0 run. The run helped start a 15-3 closing stretch that secured an opening set victory for the guests.

Blake made her presence felt in the second set, knocking down four kills in the frame, as both sides battled through the early part, trading the lead until a seven-point swing by Gannon made it 18-12 in favor of the Golden Knights. The Saints could not counter, falling to their visitors for the second-straight set, 25-15.

In the third set, the Saints hurried out to an 8-4 lead, followed by a four-point surge from Gannon before both teams traded service errors to make it 9-9. With the frame tied, D'Youville put together its best run of the match, scoring eight-straight points and taking a 17-9 advantage in large part due to three aces from Wlostowski. After a side-out from both teams, the Golden Knights responded with a 10-0 streak that put them in front, 20-18. Gannon eventually sealed the set win, 25-20, to earn their third-straight sweep.

Notables – Six Golden Knights ended Sunday with multiple blocks, led by four blocking assists from Makenna Gavin … Damstetter paced the Saints with two block assists … In addition to Blake, Kristin Schorr and Lauren Sampson both tallied multiple service aces on the day … Aside from Wlostowski and Kristensen, Walters was the only other player to record multiple assists, tallying three in the match … Walters’ 11 digs are the most for her in a match since she notched 17 in an Oct. 8, 2019 loss to Pitt-Bradford … The Saints first match against Division II competition also marks their first time hosting a ranked D-II team in the College Center Gymnasium.

Up Next – The Saints continue their spring season on Saturday, March 20, with another home match. The weekend contest with East Coast Conference foe Roberts Wesleyan will begin at 3 p.m.

Follow the Saints – You can follow the D'Youville women’s volleyball team on Twitter (@dyouvillewvb) and Instagram (@dyouvillewvb).