BROOKLINE, Mass. - A balanced offensive attack of six kills each by senior Qua'Sean Crowe (Stamford, Conn.) and freshman David Hernadez (Springfield, Mass.) led the Elms College Blazers to a 3-0 (25-15, 25-22, 25-12) New England Collegiate Conference over the Newbury Nighthawks on Thursday evening at Pappas Gymnasium.
Crowe was efficient offensively, hitting at .556 for the match. Hernandez took 19 attempts, coming one error for a hitting percentage of .263. The Blazers setters, sophomore John Dunphy (Farmington, Conn.) and junior Kahlil Peters (Hartford, Conn.) finished with double-digit assists, 18 and 10, respectively.
Nighthawks junior Joshua Thorne (Oxford, Conn.) finished with a game-high eight kills. Senior Nile Fox (Hampton, Va.) added five kills on 14 attempts, hitting a team-best .214. Freshman Oscar Chavez (Independence, Ore.) finished with 17 assists and five digs.
The first set was broken open early by the Blazers who embarked on an 11-1 scoring run early in the set to grab a 14-4 lead. The Blazers hit .222 in the set, recording 10 kills on 27 attempts. A Nighthawks service error would end the set, 25-15 for Elms College.
Elms grabbed early control in set two, leading by five for a stretch in the middle of the set. The Nighthawks surged back thanks to kills from Thorne, Fox, senior Prince Boateng (Worcester, Mass.) and freshman Tyler Polite (Cambridge, Mass.) to trail tie the set at 21-21. However, a trio of Nighthawks errors and a Hernandez kill would ultimately give the Blazers the 25-22 set win.
The Blazers played effective volleyball in the third set, hitting a game-best .381 while committing just a pair of errors. A Blazers 16-4 scoring run would define the final set in their 25-12 third set victory.
The Blazers improve to 12-7 (4-2 NECC) and have won three straight games dating back to March 4. The Nighthawks fall to 3-10 (2-4 NECC) with the loss.
Elms looks for their fourth and fifth straight wins in a tri-match on Saturday against Southern Vermont and Eastern Nazarene. The Nighthawks look to end their losing skid on Saturday against Dean College at 11:00 a.m.