PITTSFIELD — The Lenox volleyball team had several chances to extend its match against Pittsfield, but the Generals showed poise in key situations, sweeping the Millionaires for a 25-16, 25-21, 26-24 win. The win moves Pittsfield to 6-0 on the season.
After winning the first set handily, the Generals found themselves in 16-9 hole after a Victoria Vittori ace. The visitors rallied, however, ending the match on a 16-5 run. Service errors and unforced errors doomed the Millionaires during the set. Late in the set, Anna Quinto and Danielle LeBlanc had clutch blocks at the net to ice the game.
"I told them in the circle after the game that it was a good job to come back," Pittsfield coach Brian Lawton said. "We fought back and never gave up. That's the mindset that we have to have."
The third set was another back-and-forth affair. Pittsfield benefitted from three straight Lenox unforced errors, taking a 16-15 lead. The Millionaires responded with four straight points, capped by consecutive aces from Vittori to go up by two. They went up 21-18, before a service error and kills from Nichole LaPierre and Brennah Brickle tied the game at 21.
The teams traded points, and Vittori capped a long volley with a kill, followed by a Morgan Hayden kill, bringing Lenox within a point of forcing a fourth game. But Katara Mullett stopped the rally with a kill, and strong serving from Alyssa Puntin allowed Pittsfield to close out the match.
"The girls put up a lot of effort," Lenox coach Bessena Cabe said. "I did everything I could to get our defense and our serve-receive team to be up there, but we didn't show up today. Katara served pretty tough and she rallied up a good five points against us."
Kamea Quetti led Pittsfield with 10 kills and two blocks. Riley Nichols had 26 assists and four kills and LaPierre had seven kills and eight digs. Kayanna Black led Lenox with five kills and two blocks. Anna Lynch had eight digs, Bombee Lahart had four kills and seven digs and Hayden added six digs.
With the game in the balance, Lenox's players struggled to execute. Cabe said close-game situations is where the youth of the team shows up the most.
"More experienced players tend to be more comfortable in those situations," he said. "Our players tend to shy away and there were a couple nervous players on the court. We've got to get back in the gym and get better."
Pittsfield's hot start has it undefeated in the North Division. The Generals entered the season with several new players in new spots, but the team is coming together well so far.
"We work really well together," Mullett said. "I've never really been on a team that gets along as well as we do, so I'm really proud of the way we stuck together and pulled through at the end of the game."
Contact Akeem Glaspie at 413-496-6252