Storm wash up Pirates in thriller

In what looked like an easy victory for St. John’s, the Red Storm narrowly survived a thrilling five set victory over the Seton Hall Pirates on Friday night. Junior Ashley Boursiquot notched her first-career double-double by tying her career-high for kills (10) while setting a new career-high for blocks (10).

“I felt since that first Big East game I wanted to give all I got,” Boursiquot told reporters after the match. “So I did my best and we got the win.”

The Lady Johnnies started off strong as they took the first two sets 25-18 and 25-20. However, the Pirates wouldn’t walk the plank that easy as they fought back to win the next two sets 22-25 and 18-25 before the Lady Storm pushed them over the edge with a 15-13 win in the fifth set.

Along with Boursiquot, junior Aleksandra Wachowicz and sophomores Karin Palgutova and Deniz Mutlugil each recorded double-doubles and new career highs. Palgutova led the way with her career high 27 kills as well as 11 digs for her team-high fifth double-double of the year.

“I think our team did a good job of putting pressure on their hitters because their an outstanding team as well,” head coach Joanne Persico told reporters. “They’re scrappy, they have an excellent setter but we have a good team as well.”

Sophomore Shawna-Lei Santos also tied her career high for digs with 32 as she out dug the reigning Big East Libero of the Year, Alyssa Warren, who had 26 digs.

“I think we have to give some kudos to our setter who also was outstanding tonight, moving the ball around when hitters needed to run some different plays.” Persico said.

The Red Storm improve to 12-5 overall and 1-0 in Big East play. St. John’s will hit the road to play the newest conference teams – Butler on Saturday at 7 p.m. and Xavier on Sunday at 2 p.m.

“I like that they pursued and persevered. We have a young team, but we have a feisty team and we have a collected group we’re all very different, different swings, very different attitudes and personalities and it works.”