BENNINGTON, Vt. - Nighthawks freshman Rory Dobbins (Riverside, R.I.) finished with a career-high 10 kills while hitting .400 from the floor, helping the Nighthawks to their first New England Collegiate Conference win of 2018, a 3-0 (25-18, 25-19, 25-13) straight sets victory over the Southern Vermont Mountaineers on Saturday afternoon.
Nighthawks freshman Trevor Thorne (Oxford, Conn.) added seven kills and two aces. Dobbins and Thorne accounted for 17 of the Nighthawks 24 total kills.
Mountaineers senior El Olivares (Miami, Fla.) finished with a match-high 15 kills to go with nine digs while sophomore Te Hayward (Baltimore, Md.) added nine kills and eight digs.
Early errors plagued both sides as they fought to a 10-10 tie in the opening set. The Nighthawks broke free with a 9-1 run, including a pair of aces, as the Mountaineers offense continued to struggle. By the time Southern Vermont recovered with a 6-0 run, the damage had been done and a pair of kills by Thorne and a Mountaineers error gave the Nighthawks the first set win.
In the second, the Nighthawks took a four-point lead early and rode most of that advantage through the set to a 20-16 lead. The Mountaineers would score three straight but the Nighthawks closed the door, winning the last five points of the set. Despite being out killed 19-14 in the first two sets, the Nighthawks took a 2-0 set lead into the third.
In the final set, the Nighthawks leaped out quickly to a 15-7 lead. The Mountaineers cut the deficit to four but the Nighthawks ended the match on a 9-1 run, capped by a Mountaineers error, to sweep the Mountaineers.
"It was a good team win," said Head Coach Peter Kazlas. "We really minimized the errors that plagued us in the Eastern Nazarene loss and that led to the success of today."
The win moves the Nighthawks to 2-9 (1-1 NECC) while the loss drops the Mountaineers to 0-9 (0-4 NECC).
Next for the Nighthawks is a Wednesday evening battle with the defending champion Endicott College at Pappas Gymnasium at 7:00 p.m.