UConn sweeps Big East opener

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The University of Connecticut women’s volleyball team opened up its Big East Conference play with a sweep of Seton Hall and St. John’s over the weekend.  

The Huskies started the conference season on Friday as they hosted Seton Hall. The first set wasn’t terribly competitive, as UConn dominated from start to finish and claimed a 25-16 victory. The second set saw the Pirates take an early lead, but in typical fashion, the Huskies went on a huge 9-3 run to take the advantage before closing out the set.  

The final set showcased another dominant team performance for UConn, who went on multiple 4-0 runs and closed out the match with a 25-11 win. Graduate student McKayla Wuensch continued her great season, notching 33 assists in the match, while junior Jasmine Davis led the team with 12 kills. Senior Jake Kennadie-Turner also added four blocks, putting her at third in the conference for blocks per set at 1.41.  

The second match of the weekend saw another sweep of a Big East team, as UConn took down St. John’s on Saturday. The first set was a heated battle, as both teams went back and forth en route to a tie at 11. However, three straight Huskies blocks allowed UConn to find a rhythm, and they jumped out to a 23-15 lead. The Red Storm would not give up easily however, and they battled back to bring it within one point before the set was finally won by UConn.  

The Huskies got off to an early lead in the second set, but St. John’s fought their way back to a 16-16 tie. Once again, a pair of blocks sparked a Huskies run, and a kill from senior Caylee Parker finished the set, putting UConn in the position for their second sweep.  

The third set was the most contested match of the weekend. UConn was in the lead again late. But once again, their lead vanished as the Red Storm went on a seven-point run to take a 21-20 lead. Unwilling to let the Huskies lose, Davis fought back, recording back-to-back kills as the Huskies took the lead once again. The two teams battled back and forth as St. John’s answered Davis’ kills, but the Huskies came out on top and recorded their second sweep of the weekend.  

The Huskies recorded a season-high 17 blocks in the match. Sophomore Taylor Pennell anchored the defense with a magnificent 10-block performance, to push UConn to 10-4 on the season, and 2-0 in Big East play. 

The Huskies will travel to Milwaukee next weekend, where they will hope to extend their undefeated Big East record against Marquette, before heading to Chicago to face DePaul.  

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