October 6, 2012

PSU volleyball gets back into win column


---- — NEW YORK — It took nearly one month and a trip to New York City, but the Plattsburgh State volleyball team was able to get back in the win column with a 3-1 triumph over Medaille College in the opening match of the Baruch Quad Invitational on Friday.

With the 25-23, 23-25, 25-23, 25-19 win, the Cardinals improve to 8-10 overall while Baruch falls to 5-11 on the 2012 campaign.

It appeared as though the Mavericks were on their way to a 1-0 lead in the match, but the Cardinals had other ideas. After only leading once in the set, Plattsburgh State came alive at the end of the frame as Kristen Marchisatto registered a rare termination and Abby Mell and Rosi Cummings joined forces for a block that gave the Cardinals a 1-0 advantage. Medaille led by as many as four points in the set, but a .171 attacking percentage by the Cardinals allowed them to seize the early momentum.

Much like the initial set, the second frame was a close affair throughout. While the Cardinals enjoyed a three-point edge at one point, the set featured 13 deadlocks, including one at 23-23. A Maverick kill and an attack error off the hand of Maggie Schrantz tied matters at one set each.

Instead of allowing Medaille to control the remainder of the contest, the Cardinals took control over the final two sets. Facing a 15-10 deficit in the third set, the Cardinals fought back and tied things up at 16 each after a termination from senior Rosi Cummings. From there, a trio of Medaille errors would allow Plattsburgh State to take a three-point lead which was never in danger of being taken away.

Cummings registered the final pair of terminations in order to give the Cardinals their first 2-1 lead in the month of October with a 25-23 score. Despite holding the lead, it wasn’t an easy path to victory for Plattsburgh State as they had to battle through a difficult deciding set.

Miscues plagued the Cardinals in the fourth set as Medaille jumped out to an early 5-1 lead thanks to a pair of attack errors by senior Theresa Lilly. After a well-executed break by head coach Dean O’Connell, the Cardinals made use of an 8-1 run to take control of the match for good.

During the spurt, the Cardinals were carried by a pair of terminations from Amanda Wickers as well as five unforced points from the Mavericks themselves. Even a desperate timeout by Medaille wasn’t enough to quell the momentum accumulated by the Cardinals as they refused to relinquish the lead through the remainder of the match.

Freshman Laura Diehl made her presence known in the final stages of the match, tallying a crucial solo block as well as a termination that allowed the Cardinals to hold on in the 3-1 victory. Diehl put the final nail in the coffin as she came up with a termination to make things 25-21, ensuring the 3-1 victory for the Cardinals.

Although Diehl emerged as the deciding factor in the match, Cummings posted yet another double-double consisting of team highs in kills (15) and digs (22). Diehl finished the match with a .304 attack percentage, a pair of solo blocks and seven digs. Lilly contributed a double-double of her own with 10 kills and 16 digs to go along with a solo block.

Thanks to a strong defensive display, the Cardinals limited Medaille College to an attack percentage of .061 in the match. The Cardinals, meanwhile, hit .165 and out-blocked their counterparts six to three.

Plattsburgh State will play another pair of matches in New York on Saturday at Baruch College. First up in the Big Apple will be a confrontation between the Cardinals and Centenary College (N.J.) at 11 a.m.