Releases

For Immediate Release: November 21, 2009
Contact: Matt Muzza (sports@binghamton.edu)
Phone: 607-777-2956

Binghamton volleyball wins America East Championship
Bearcats defeat UAlbany 3-1 to earn automatic NCAA berth

Box Score
[photo gallery...]

Albany, N.Y. - The America East Tournament's Most Outstanding Player
Lindsey Mueller gave out 45 assists, grabbed 10 digs, had three blocks and a kill to lead third-seeded Binghamton (15-15) to a 3-1 (25-19, 27-25, 12-25, 25-19) victory over top-seeded Albany (21-9) in the America East Championship on Saturday afternoon. Binghamton wins its second America East title and will earn an automatic bid into the NCAA Tournament.

"This was huge for our program," head coach Glenn Kiriyama said. "We beat a solid team who had been playing great all year. It was fun to watch us put together a solid match. It was one of our biggest wins in our program history."

Mueller was joined on the all-tournament team by junior outside hitters Anna Lejina and Michelle McDonough. Lejina put down a match-high 22 kills and McDonough had 21 kills and 10 digs.

Binghamton got out to a great start in the first set and controlled most of the frame. Binghamton jumped out to a 24-15 edge before the Great Danes rattled off five straight points. Binghamton then closed out the set on a UAlbany service error. Lejina had seven kills in the first set while McDonough had six and the Bearcats outhit Albany .424 to .147.

The Bearcats trailed 24-22 late in the second set before two UAlbany errors allowed the Bearcats to force a 24-24 tie. The Bearcats got a block from McDonough and senior Dawn Lammert to take set point before Albany got a point of their own to tie it at 25-25. The Bearcats then got back-to-back kills from McDonough and Lejina to close out the set and take a commanding 2-0 lead in the match.

"We were down late in that second set and we got some key plays to hang in there and get that win," Kiriyama said.

Albany then fought back in the third set to win a one-sided 25-12 set and cut Binghamton's lead to 2-1.

Binghamton was then able to close out the match and win the title by taking the fourth set 25-19. The final frame featured six ties and the turning point came when the set was knotted at 18-18 and BU rattled off three straight points on two kills by Lejina and a McDonough kill. In total, BU closed out that set on a 7-1 run.

Freshman Alex Roland tallied four kills and six blocks and libero Brianna Strong added 18 digs.

Albany was led by Teresa Coppiellie's 14 kills and Hillary White's 13 kills.

Binghamton will found out its NCAA matchup during the NCAA Selection Show on Sunday, Nov. 29 at 3 p.m. on ESPN News.

Notes: Mueller, Lejina and McDonough were joined on the all-tournament team by Albany's Brooke Stanley and Coppiellie, New Hampshire's Kate Uitti and UMBC's Alyssa Lang ... The win against Albany breaks an eight-game losing streak to the Great Danes ... Binghamton was picked as the preseason favorite to win the conference by the America East coaches

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