West Haven, Conn. – A historic season for Molloy volleyball came to an end in the semifinal round of the NCAA Division II East Regional Tournament as the second-seeded Lions (26-2) fell to the sixth-seeded Yellow Jackets of American International College, 3-2.
For the second time in as many nights, Molloy dropped the first two sets. Facing elimination in the third set, the score was tied four times early on before the Lions went on a 9-1 run to go ahead 13-6, featuring kills from sophomores Hailey Wehr, Sophia Smith, and Shannon Wren and freshman Emily Meyer for the team's first lead of the match. The Lions continued rolling, taking a ten point, 20-10, lead before ultimately taking the set.
The momentum continued into the fourth set as Molloy jumped out to a 10-2 lead. The Yellow Jackets strung together a run of their own to come within seven, 19-12, but Wren and Wehr combined to help the Lions take the fourth set and stay alive for a fifth and final game.
A four-point run from American International to go up 6-3 in the deciding set would ultimately doom the Lions, who were unable to score more than two straight points. An attack error by the Yellow Jackets brought Molloy within two late, 12-10, but AIC closed the contest with three points to reach 15 and advance to the East Regional Championship tomorrow at 7:00 p.m.
Redshirt sophomore Carly Banks (19) and Wehr (11) led the offensive charge for Molloy. Banks, who previously set the program's single-season kill record, concluded the campaign with 465 kills. Smith set the program's new career assist record in the quarterfinals and added 47 on tonight's performance to end the year with 2233. In her final game in maroon and white, Dakota O'Neill led the game with 26 digs, bringing her career total to 1633, second all-time at Molloy. Meyer and Smith each reached double-digit digs, totaling 19 and 15, respectively. The effort was Smith's 10th double-double of the campaign.
Provided by the Molloy Sports Information Department.