NEW HAVEN, Conn. – Sophomore outside hitter Shannon Kelly (Hyde Park, N.Y./Franklin D. Roosevelt HS) posted a 21-kill, 13-dig double-double and senior libero Jessica Segal (West Harrison, N.Y./Harrison HS) made 34 digs as Bentley University took the final three sets to best Southern Connecticut State, 3-1, in Northeast-10 Conference women's volleyball Thursday night at the Pelz Gymnasium.
The 19-25, 25-22, 25-15, 25-17 victory was the fourth straight, and 12th in the last 14 matches, for Bentley, which improved to 13-6 overall, 6-1 conference and 10-3 against the East Region.
Kelly's 21 kills, a career-best, was the most by a Bentley player in a four-set match since 2007. After three kills in the opening set, she registered six, seven and five in the next three and finished with a .283 hitting percentage. Her night also included three of the Falcons' 13 service aces, a total that boosted the team's conference-leading average over two to 2.03.
Segal came within one of her career-high for digs (set a month ago against Lubbock Christian) and became the first Bentley player since Cassie Kraft in 2009 to have at least that many twice during a season.
Kelly's three aces was matched by freshman Celia Cristofoli (Hudson, Ohio/Hudson HS), the NE-10 leader in that category, and senior outside hitter Jaci Buscher (Lakewood, Colo./Rocky Mountain HS). Buscher was second to Kelly in kills, finishing with nine. Junior Allie Rotkin (Cumming, Ga./Milton HS) handled the setting duties over the last three sets and totaled 24 assists and two aces.
Southern (5-17, 1-6 NE-10) used a 9-0 run to take control of the opening set, but the rest of the night belonged to the visitors. A 12-3 Falcon spurt produced an 18-11 bulge in the second, Bentley started the third with a 17-8 surge, and an 11-3 run in the fourth produced a commanding 18-11 lead.
Bentley will be at home for its next three with the homestand beginning Tuesday against Southern New Hampshire (7:30 pm).