STORRS, Conn. - The University of Connecticut volleyball team opened the 2014 season with a straight sets victory (25-20, 25-22, 25-22) over New Hampshire on Friday night at Harry A. Gampel Pavilion .
With the win, UConn improves to 23-16 all-time in season openers and boasts a stellar 18-3 record in its last 21 home openers.
Senior tri-captain Devon Maugle (Plymouth Meetings, Pa.) led the offensive charge for the Huskies, posting a double-double with 11 kills and 11 digs. Immanuella Anagu (Culver City, Calif.) added nine kills to go along with a .444 hitting percentage. Defensively, senior Brianna Datti (Durham, N.H.) notched 18 digs and dished out seven assists. Jessika Long (Sandy, Utah) and Rebecca Rivera (Mississauga, Ontario) both shared the setting duties, combining for 31 of UConn's 39 helpers.
As a team, UConn picked up eight blocks assists. Freshman Tosin Adeniyi (Springfield, Ill.) recorded the Huskies' lone solo block of the match. The Huskies also held their out-of-state rivals to an overall .151 hitting percentage.
UConn took an early lead in the first set before a pair of Hayley Cmajdalka (College Station, Texas) kills forced UNH to burn a timeout, trailing 11-6. The Huskies kept the momentum following the breather, rattling off an 8-4 run. Two straight UNH errors resulted in another timeout, before the Wildcats made a 9-3 run to bring the score to 24-21 in favor of the Huskies. Adeniyi sealed the set by slamming down a kill as UConn grabbed the win, 25-21.
UNH responded early in the second set, charging out to an 8-4 lead. The Wildcats extended their advantage to 16-11, forcing UConn to take its first timeout of the match. Another 3-1 run resulted in the second Connecticut timeout of the set before the Huskies collected themselves and made a remarkable 10-2 run to draw even at 21. Two Anagu kills gave UConn a 23-21 lead and the Huskies were able to come away with a 25-22 set win after an attack error by UNH's Tori Forrest ended play.
UNH tested the Huskies in the third set, jumping out to a 7-2 lead. Kills by Maugle and Cmajdalka brought the home team closer before a set error resulted in a Wildcat timeout. Following the stoppage, the Huskies moved out to a 22-17 lead but surrendered four of the next five points and called a timeout, leading 22-21. Maugle ended any threat of a comeback when she smacked down two kills to secure the match victory.
The Huskies have two matches tomorrow to round out the 2014 UConn Classic. First up, Connecticut hosts Central Connecticut at 12:30 p.m. before gearing up for a 7:30 p.m. showdown with Big Ten member Indiana.
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