PISCATAWAY, N.J. (Sept. 28, 2012) – The Rutgers volleyball team fell at Villanova in four sets Friday, posting set scores of 16-25, 21-25, 25-23 and 21-25 in Villanova, Pa. The Scarlet Knights moved to 9-14 all-time against the Wildcats and are now 4-2 in away matches this season.
The Scarlet Knights (14-4, 0-3 BIG EAST) hit .162 in the contest compared to a .222 mark by Villanova. Rutgers compiled 54 kills, 51 assists, 88 digs and 7.0 team blocks in the contest. The Wildcats (6-10, 1-2 BIG EAST) recorded 57 kills, 52 assists, 98 digs and 4.0 blocks.
Rutgers fell behind early in the first set and couldn’t catch Villanova. The Scarlet Knights had an early lead in the second set, scoring the first four points, but the Wildcats chipped away and took the lead at the 18-17 mark and didn’t look back.
Down 7-0 to start the third game, Rutgers rallied and caught Villanova to equal the score at 10. Led by seven kills from freshman Sarah Schmid (Highlands Ranch, Colo.) in the set, Rutgers took a game that was back-and-forth late. The Scarlet Knights couldn’t maintain a late lead in the fourth stanza to fall to the Wildcats.
Senior Stephanie Zielinski (Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.) tallied a match-best 44 assists along with 15 digs, her 13th double-double of the season and ninth straight. It is the 13th time this season she has notched 40 or more assists in a contest. Freshman Alex Lassa (Eagle, Colo.) also had a double-double, her seventh of the season, with 13 kills and 13 digs. It was her second-straight.
The Scarlet Knights had four players with double-digit kills, topped by senior Alex Jones (Chesapeake, Va.) who tied the match-high of 14. Schmid added 13 kills of her own on a .387 hitting percentage. Junior Tracy Wright (Fair Lawn, N.J.) paced Rutgers on the defensive end with 28 digs and passed the 1,000 career digs mark, reaching 1,014 total.
Villanova was led by 14 kills from Lauren Carpenter, 43 assists from Emma Pettit and 34 digs from Mariah Henley.
Rutgers is back in action at Georgetown on Sunday, Sept. 30, at 2 p.m. The Scarlet Knights hold a 25-16 record all-time against the Hoyas, tied with Temple for the most wins that Rutgers has compiled over any team in its history.
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