CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – Newbury College freshman Billy Stephen (Windermere, Fla.) knocked down a team-high ten kills to go with six digs to lead the Nighthawks over Lesley University 3-0 (25-14, 25-17, 25-19) tonight in New England Collegiate Conference (NECC) men's volleyball action at Buckingham, Browne, and Nichols. The win lifts Newbury to a 5-15 overall record and 2-6 in NECC play while the Lynx fall to 0-14 and 0-6.
Senior Jake Powell (Salinas, Calif.) finished with eight kills, nine digs, and eight assists for the visitors while freshman Stephen Watson (Marina, Calif.) swung a team-high .333 for five kills. Junior Chi Yin Li (Framingham, Mass.) dished out a team-high 19 assists while leading all players with five service aces and five digs. Senior Pat Robidoux (Barrington, R.I.) registered six kills, five digs, and eight assists.
Leading the way for Lesley was freshman Tyler Burns (Newtown, Pa.) who registered a career-high 16 kills on a personal best .333 hitting percentage. Burns added two aces and four digs on the night. Classmate Mitchel Ulacco (Winchester, Mass.) dished out a team-best 19 assists while senior Melvin Morales (Chelsea, Mass.) finished with three kills and added a team-high six digs.
A Burns kill followed by a Newbury attacking error cut the Lynx deficit to 15-13 midway through the first set, but the Nighthawks bounced back to close the set on an impressive 10-1 run. Yin Li and Powell powered the Newbury attack in the opening set, registering four kills apiece while hitting a combined .545 in the 25-14 win.
After the Nighthawks jumped out to an 8-1 edge to start the second set, the Lynx would claw back and cut the lead to four at 13-9 following a kill from freshman Jacob DiDomenico (North Providence, R.I.) and a pair of Newbury errors. Holding a 16-12 lead, two Yin Li aces would spark a 7-2 Nighthawk run as the visitors took a 2-0 lead in the match with a 25-17 second set win.
Stephen paced the second set for Newbury, knocking down four kill while Robidoux, Powell, Watson, and freshman Nile Fox (Hampton, Va.) all registered two. Burns led the Lesley offense in the set, connecting for five kills while swinging .400 from the floor.
A kill from Burns would force the fourth tie of the tightly contested third set at 18-18. Lesley was unable to grab a lead, however, and Newbury finished off the set with on a 7-1 streak to take the set 25-19 and the match 3-0. Once again it was Stephen leading the charge for the visitors, collecting five kills in the third set while Robidoux added four. The Nighthawks swung a match-high .267 collectively in the final set. Burns tried to keep the Lynx in it, knocking in seven of his 16 kills in the third.
Lesley will return to action Saturday when they travel to Elms College for an NECC matchup at 1:00p. Newbury, winners of four of their last five, will also be back in conference action on Saturday, when they play host to Regis College at 12:00p.