CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – On the road Tuesday night, the fourth-ranked Johnson & Wales University women's volleyball team showed the resolve that won them the NCAA Regional last year. The Wildcats fought back all night to prevail, 3-1 (25-22, 19-25, 25-23, 25-22), at No. 22 MIT.
#22 MIT: 10-2
#4 Johnson & Wales: 10-1
The Engineers evened the first set, 18-18, but JWU responded with a 6-0 run that was aided by four MIT errors. JWU returned the favor with a trio of errors in the second set that allowed the hosts to build an 18-12 lead.
JWU found itself down 23-21 in the third set, but Maria Coniglio and Kate Walker came up with a block that started a 4-0 run. The Engineers committed a pair of errors down the stretch around a Monica Cordova ace.
The Wildcats were down 20-18 in the fourth, but two MIT miscues and a Katie Leidhold ace swung the game to JWU, 23-20. Coniglio finished the match off with a pair of kills.
Three Wildcats posted double-digit kills, topped by Leidhold with 14. Coniglio had a double-double with 12 kills and 14 digs and Walker added 11 winners.
Johnson & Wales had a 66-56 advantage in digs that limited the Engineers to a .175 hitting percentage. Coniglio, setter Brylee Frank and libero Elyssa Nicolas each had a match-high 14 digs and Mikayla Arimura produced 13.
The Wildcats are back at home Friday to host the JWU Invitational, starting with a 5 pm match against Scranton.