October 7, 2012

Cardinals go 1-1 at Baruch Quad Invitational


---- — NEW YORK — Eager to keep their winning ways going, the Plattsburgh State volleyball team finished 1-1 on their final day of competition at the Baruch Quad Invitational on Saturday. The Cardinals opened up their day with a 3-0 defeat of Centenary (N.J.) before falling in a hard-fought four-set match to Baruch in the second match.

Showing no signs of wear in their second match at the invite, the Cardinals came out and torched the Cyclones with a .333 attack percentage en route to a 3-0 victory.

Balance was the name of the game as four players accumulated eight kills or more led by Laura Diehl who finished with a team-high nine on 14 swings and a pair of attack errors. The freshman also put her serving prowess on display, smashing home five of the nine Plattsburgh State service aces in the match.

Rosi Cummings, Jeanette Braun and Theresa Lilly each finished with eight terminations and Cummings chipped in 12 digs and a service ace. Braun was especially efficient in her attacks, finishing with a .727 hitting percentage.

Kristen Marchisatto led the way with 19 assists which were complimented by a pair of services aces and eight digs. Amanda Wickers scooped up a team-high 18 digs in the 25-21, 25-9, 25-19 rout as well.

An aggressive attack strategy by Baruch to begin the contest left the Cardinals trailing 5-0 in the early minutes of the first set. Plattsburgh State had little trouble mounting a comeback though, as a trio of attack errors by the hosts coupled with kills from Diehl and Marchisatto as well as a service ace from the latter tied things up at six.

Plattsburgh State was never able to obtain a lead in the set, though, and found itself down 17-11 in the middle states of the frame before making things interesting in the closing points. A termination from Cummings brought the visitors to within one at 22-21, but the Bearcats had the response on the next point to take a two-point lead. The Cardinals nearly forced extra points thanks to another Baruch miscue that made things 24-23, but Jessica Wu tallied one of her 17 kills to put the Cardinals in a 1-0 hole.

In the second frame, it was the Cardinals who jumped out to an early lead thanks to a kill from Diehl and a ball handling error on the part of the Bearcats. Intent on tying things up, Plattsburgh State opened up a 13-9 advantage that culminated with a service ace from Diehl.

From there, however, errors began to plague the Cardinals who were on the receiving end of a 6-0 run by the Bearcats. Three attack errors by Plattsburgh State and a pair of blocks brought the momentum back to the hosts before Cummings gave the Cardinals their only other lead of the set with a kill to make things 16-15. Unfortunately, a 10-0 set-clinching run by the hosts would put the Cardinals on the edge of defeat. A previously potent offense by the Cardinals had been limited to a .021 hitting percentage at the end of the second set.

Intent on making a comeback, the Cardinals were able to regroup in the third set. Down 3-1 in the early minutes of the frame, the visitors employed a 5-1 run to take control of the set for good. A diversified attack plan paid off for the Cardinals who received kills from Cummings, Abby Mell and Braun during the run. Plattsburgh State’s defense held strong against the Bearcats and the Cardinals were able to earn a 25-20 victory to force a fourth set.

Any momentum gathered by the Cardinals quickly evaporated in the deciding frame, however, as the Bearcats jumped out to a 4-0 lead and never looked back. The Cardinals could seemingly find no holes in the strong Baruch defense, hitting just .086 in the final set. Cummings brought the visitors to within two points with a kill to make things 23-21 but that was as close as Plattsburgh State would come as the Bearcats took the set via a 25-23 tally.

Baruch’s defense gave the Cardinals fits for the majority of the match as the visitors were only able to register a hitting percentage of .106. Cummings continued her dominant play with another double-double that featured team-highs in terminations (11) and digs (20).

Diehl enjoyed another great match, racking up 10 kills on 21 attempts for a hitting percentage of .381. The freshman added three of Plattsburgh State’s 10 service aces along with four digs, a solo block and a pair of block assists.

Marchisatto and Nason split time distributing assists with Marchisatto accumulating a team-high 18 compared to 14 by Nason.

Wu led the way for the Bearcats, helping them hit .205 in the bout. She completed her double-double with 17 digs. Rebecca Peralta also notched a double-double by spiking 11 kills and scooping up 22 digs.

Up next for the Cardinals is a trip to Canton to try and earn a season sweep of the SUNY Canton Kangaroos. The match is scheduled to begin at 7 p.m. on Wednesday.