Worcester, Mass. – Ana Mercado (Guaynabo, Puerto Rico) led the way with a match-high 13 kills and host Clark University opened up its 2016 season with a 3-1 win over the University New England in non-league volleyball action.
Score: Clark 3, UNE 1 (14-25, 25-15, 25-18 and 25-21).
Records: Clark 1-0; UNE 0-1
Location: Kneller Athletic Center, Worcester, Mass.
How It Happened:
The Cougars struggled hitting in the first set (-.029) and the visitors took full advantage, rolling to a convincing first set triumph. Clark got back on track and raced through the next two sets before taking a while in the fourth and final set to claim the season-opening victory.
Mercado kicked off her sophomore campaign in style, totaling 13 kills on a team-best .308 hitting.
UNE was paced by Erika Sawicki (Wilbraham, Mass.) and her 10 kills and four digs.
Rachel Webb (Celina, Texas) racked up a match-high 33 assists to go along with eight digs.
"Our team did a nice job balancing the emotions of the first game," said tenth-year head coach Mickey Cahoon. "I thought our experience made a difference in some tight moments, so. we are happy to get a win over a solid team to start the season."
What Else Happened?:
Junior Jackie Jiminez-Maldonado (San Francisco, Calif.), playing collegiate volleyball for the first time since high school, impressed, racking up nine kills, while Savannah Sanford (San Anselmo, Calif.) posted 14 digs.
Marina Ramos (Guaynabo, Puerto Rico) was her normal self, finishing with 12 kills and 13 digs for the Scarlet and White, while Bekah Mather was extremely effective for the Nor'Easters, ending with six kills on .462 hitting.
UNE will play host to Lasell College on Saturday in their home opener, while Clark hits the road for the ultra-competitive Haverford Invitational. On Saturday, they square off with Heidelberg and Arcadia, before wrapping up the weekend against Mary Washington and Marymount.