Stewart, Knights Capture First Road Win at Chestnut Hill in Five-Set Thriller

Stewart, Knights Capture First Road Win at Chestnut Hill in Five-Set Thriller

PHILADELPHIA, Pa. – Sophomore Cassidy Stewart posted a career-high 22 kills, while senior Kristen Moore and junior Nicoletta DiCocco both notched double-doubles, as the Queens College volleyball team earned its first road win of the season, 3-2, at Chestnut Hill College in a match that came down to the wire.

With the win, Queens improved to 2-4 overall, while Chestnut Hill fell to 1-10 on the year.

Stewart was on-point, posting a .475 hitting percentage to go with her 22 kills. Meanwhile, Moore and DiCocco also hit career-best marks in digs. Moore tallied a career-high 22 digs along with 48 assists, three service aces and two blocks, and DiCocco doubled up with 12 kills and a career-best 23 digs.

The Knights held the lead for a large majority of the opening set, but the Griffins kept within striking distance. Queens jumped out to a 12-8 lead after a kill by sophomore Lauren Kehoe forced a Chestnut Hill timeout. The Knights kept attacking, stretching the advantage to 16-11 before three straight points for the Griffins made it 16-14. Kills by sophomore Anita Sengara and Stewart helped extend the lead back to four at 19-15, but the Griffins rallied off a 10-2 run to take the set, 25-21.

Queens came out firing in the second set, leaping to a 10-3 lead and forcing a Griffin timeout. The Knights maintained their lead this time around, pushing the lead to 11 at 16-5 after back-to-back aces by Moore. A kill by Kehoe gave Queens a 21-12 lead before Chestnut Hill snuck back in, 24-19, but Stewart slammed home a kill to end the set at 25-19.

Again, Queens had control in the third set, leading for nearly all of the stanza. After the Griffins came within one, 9-8, Stewart caught fire, tallying four kills over a 7-1 run for the Knights, pushing the lead to 16-9. The Knights kept their foot on the pedal, as they took an 18-11 lead, but suddenly the Griffins chipped away to come within three at 21-18. It was Stewart again, though, recording two kills to lead to Queens to a 4-0 run to end the set.

The two teams went back-and-forth in the fourth set, yet again it was the Knights in front early. A kill by junior Leeks Hollis capped a 5-0 run that gave Queens a 7-3 lead early on. However, with the Knights ahead 12-9, Kennedy Sutton notched a kill for the Griffins to cap three straight points to tie it up at 12 all. After Chestnut Hill took a 14-13 lead, back-to-back kills from Kehoe sparked a 7-1 run for Queens, giving the Knights a 20-17 lead and forcing a Chestnut Hill timeout. With the Knights just three points away from victory at 22-19, the Griffins sprung for six straight points to steal the set, 25-22.

Finally, in the fifth set, Queens took an early lead as it had all night long, but this time held on when it mattered most. Kills by Stewart and DiCocco led the Knights to a 3-0 lead early, and a Sengara kill put the advantage to 6-2 later. The Griffins got two quick points before the Knights went on a 4-0 run looking to run away with the win. Chestnut Hill wasn't done yet, though, going on a 7-1 run to tie it at 11. However, in the end, Stewart was too much for the Griffins, powering two kills to help the Knights seal the set and match.

Sengara nearly doubled up with nine kills, 10 digs, two aces and two blocks. Kehoe added nine kills and five blocks for the Knights, while senior Reggie Anthony and Hollis posted season-high totals in digs with 26 and 16, respectively.

Queens will return home for its East Coast Conference (ECC) opener against NYIT on Tuesday, Sept. 19, at 7 p.m.