LANCASTER, Pa. – The Franklin & Marshall volleyball team remained undefeated in Centennial Conference play and notched its five consecutive sweep with a 3-0 victory over Haverford on Wednesday night (25-22, 25-19, 25-22). The Diplomats (10-6, 3-0 CC) are now one of just two remaining undefeated teams in the conference with Johns Hopkins after the Blue Jays won a five-set match with Gettysburg tonight.
Franklin & Marshall hit .250 as a team with two of its three leaders in kills swinging over .300. Coco Shultz racked up 10 kills in and hit .304 on the night, with Sydney Levins adding nine more during a .350 hitting night. Reigning Centennial Conference Offensive Player of the Week Gianna Mangiamele tied for the team lead in kills, hitting just under .300 for the match. Jada West (5 kills, 2 blocks) and Lauren Arnold (four kills, two blocks) also registered over five offensive points during the victory.
Despite F&M winning all three games, the score was tied on 21 occassions and changed hands during nine other instances throughout the first two sets. Fourteen of those ties came during a back-and-forth second set. F&M took the lead at 8-7 during the first set and stretched its advantage to 10-7 after the services of Hannah McCarthy and Makenna Penuel secured six of eight points. That lead held until four straight service points from the Fords made the score 17-15 in the visitor's favor. Eventually tied at 19-all, the Diplomats took the set by winning six of the final nine points as not even a pair of Haverford timeouts could stop the late momentum on the F&M side.
The 14th and final tie during the second set also came at 19-all before F&M won six of the final seven points thanks in large part to the service of Liah Perez who closed her scoring run with an ace. Although the final game ended up a close score, the Diplomats earned a match point at 24-14 before Haverford saved eight straight points. With the score at 24-22, the Diplomats finally earned that elusive point with a big kill from Mangiamele to allow her to hit double figures in that category for the third consecutive match.
In addition to the big offensive numbers, Perez dished out 20 assists and had two of F&M's 10 service aces on the evening. McCarthy added 13 more helpers, while Meredith Mangum did a little of everything with a team-best 17 digs and four service aces to go along with six assists. F&M came away with four blocks on the night while limiting the Fords to a .133 hitting percentage as a team.
Volleyball will look to keep its momentum rolling this Saturday as the Diplomats travel to Washington College for a 1 p.m. Centennial Conference matchup in Chestertown.