WHITE PLAINS, NY --The Iona College volleyball team held off Holy Cross in five sets to earn a win in its 2015 season opener in its first contest at the Hampton Inn-vitational hosted by Bryant University. After dropping the first set (17-25), the Gaels won sets two (27-25) and three (25-20) and then lost a nail biter in set four (26-24). The Maroon & Gold closed out the match with a 15-9 set five win.
Rookie OH Claire Archibald led the way with 16 kills while also recording nine digs and two blocks. Sophomore OH Kassandra Darnaby posted 14 kills and two blocks, while junior MH Karly White had 10 kills and four blocks. Rookie setter Emma Rose posted 46 assists, seven digs and two blocks. Defensively, freshman libero Jessica Paolucci had 25 digs and rookie DS Amanda Gannon posted 10 digs in the win. Freshman MH Mia Bonsignore had seven kills and three blocks while hitting a team best .429.
Trailing by 10 points at 19-9 in set three, Iona rallied for 10 straight points to knot the match at 19-all. After conceding the next point to trail 20-19, the Gaels scored the final six to win the set. The team scored 16 of the final 17 points in the thrilling win. In the deciding set, Iona hit a match best .269 with 10 kills and three errors in 27 attempts.
Iona returns to action tomorrow at 10:00 am when they take on MAAC rival Quinnipiac in a non-conference tilt. It completes play in Smithfield against host Bryant at 4:00 pm.