NEW BRITAIN, Conn. – It was another record breaking day for the Bobcats as junior libero Logan Riker (Bowling Green, Ohio) became just the second player in Quinnipiac women's volleyball history to record 1,000 career digs but the Bobcats couldn't pull out a victory, losing to NEC foe Central Connecticut State, 3-0 (25-16, 25-17, 25-14). The loss drops Quinnipiac to 1-14 overall and 0-6 in the NEC while the Blue Devils improve to 11-9 and 6-1 in conference play.
With 11 digs against the Blue Devils on Saturday, Riker exceeds 1,000 for her career and now stands at 1,011, only six away from matching Kelby Carey's program record of 1,017 set in 2011. A day after senior right side Taylor Payne (Warwick, N.Y.) became the fifth player in program history to record 500 career kills, Riker has added her name to the list of individual milestones for this year's team.
For the match, the Bobcats had their best game statistically since their win against Providence on Sept. 14. They put up 33 kills as a team, their most in a three-set match all since and second best total of the year next to their 54-kill outing against Providence. They also finished with 31 assists and 30 digs which both rank near the top in a game this season.
The limiting factor in the Bobcat's loss was their 28 errors, the second-most committed in a game this season. In the first set, Quinnipiac held a lead as they were up 9-6 to the NEC's second-place Blue Devils before a long Central Conn. St. run of 19-7 helped give them a first set victory of 25-16.
The Blue Devils were the one to jump out to an early lead in the second set as their lead ballooned to as much as 15-6 and then junior middle hitter Bonnie Conklin (Plano, Texas) provided the Bobcat with the spark it needed. She picked up three kills down the stretch to keep Quinnipiac within striking distance but it wasn't enough as Central Conn. St. came out on top 25-17.
In the deciding third set, Quinnipiac and their balanced offensive attack kept the score close with sophomore setter Brittanie Robinson (Fresno, Calif.), sophomore outside hitter Tanner Celestin (Norco, Calif.), freshman outside hitter Chandler Thornton (Arlington, Texas), Payne and Conklin all recorded a kill in the early going. With the score at 6-6, the Blue Devils went on another commanding run as they took 19 of the last 25 points for a 25-14 victory.
Celestin continued her impressive play of late as the Bobcat's leader in kills compiled 11 to go along with eight digs on Sunday. Her 11 kills against Sacred Heart on Saturday gives her 22 for the weekend and 93 for the season. Robinson also continued her dynamic all-around play with 27 assists (second-most in a match this season), four digs, three kills, and one block. Conklin's nine kills were her second-highest total in a match for the season and she also added two blocks. Riker's 11 digs on Sunday gave her eight double-digit dig outings for the season.
The Bobcats hit the road for their next conference showdown with St. Francis (N.Y.) on Saturday, Oct. 13 at 1 p.m. in Brooklyn Heights, N.Y.
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