Immediate Release: September 21, 2011
Contact: Terrence Lollie (firstname.lastname@example.org)
BEARCAT VOLLEYBALL BLOG
Four: Sept. 15-17 - Columbia Invitational
is a day-by-day commentary of the Binghamton volleyball team's
trip to New York City as they took part in the Columbia Invitational.
- Bus arrived in the back of the Events Center instead of in
front of West Gym, already upsetting Coach Kiriyama. Departure
time 5:02 p.m
..two minutes late. Leaving campus for about
three hour drive to hotel in Tarrytown, N.Y. Itinerary estimates
9 p.m. as time of arrival at the Springhill Suites Marriot. First
match is against host Columbia at noon on Friday.
On the bus ride down the players choose a variety of activities
to pass the time. Some of the volleyball players chose to study,
a few were listening to music or watching 'The Social Network,'
but most were sleeping. The rigors of being a student-athlete
seem to be catching up with most of the players as the fall semester
eases into its first month. Grace Vickers enjoyed some dual
flavored Cheez Its while listening to her Dr. Dre Bose headphones.
The coaches remained quiet throughout most of the trip attending
to their notes in preparation for the weekend tournament.
8 P.M. - Didn't stop for food so made it to the Tappen
Zee Bridge earlier than expected. Tarrytown is on the east side
of the Hudson River, not far from the Tappen Zee. Hotel is about
40 miles from Manhattan. We arrive at the hotel and check into
our rooms then it was out to dinner at Friday's. The highlight
of the meal was when Alex Roland spilled her water all over her
11:30 P.M. - LIGHTS OUT
- Breakfast in the hotel with your typical setup, runny eggs,
waffle maker, muffins, bagels, fruit, cereal, juice, milk and
coffee. Girls prepare mentally for their first match of tournament
against Columbia. Seemed like most of the team enjoyed some waffles
9:30 A.M. - Bus departs hotel to head south for Manhattan,
about a 30 minute drive. On our way down we pass through the
Bronx and Yankees Stadium and Harlem and the historic Apollo
Theatre. Bus gets to Levien Gym around 10 a.m. with minimal traffic
as the first match of the tournament starts between Iowa and
St. Francis (NY). Girls scout both of their day-two opponents
while eagerly awaiting their match versus Columbia.
Noon - Bearcats take the floor against the host Lions.
BU drops first set to Columbia 25-13, wasn't a very close set.
A more competitive second set witnesses several early ties and
lead changes. Columbia takes hold of the frame about midway through
the set. Binghamton is unable to get their hits to drop against
a stingy Lions backline. Columbia takes the second set 25-23
on their way to a sweep of Binghamton, snapping BU's four-match
1:30 P.M. - The team gets lunch down the street from the
Columbia campus at a sandwich shop called 'Sub-Conscious.' The
theme of your prototypically small New York shop, was creative
names for their sandwiches. Xiomara Ortiz ordered the 'Angie
Vice,' while Alexa Zbytniewski requested Pete's Pleasure, a chicken
cutlet sandwich which she coined, "basically the best sandwich
known to mankind." Other orders included the 'GPA,' and
the 'Alma Mater.' On the way back to the gym Jordyn Suhr and
Grace Vickers thought it would be funny to take a picture in
front of Columbia's Pupin Hall
it kind of was.
2:30 P.M. - Back on the Columbia campus to scout the St.
Francis and St. John's match.
4:00 P.M. - Team begins to warm-up for match against St.
John's, looking to bounce back from their loss to Columbia
5:00 P.M. - First serve versus the Red Storm. Bearcats
come out hot taking a two sets to none lead. Alexa Zbytniewski
tries to keep the team loose in between sets with her own rendition
of the Ting Tings,' 'That's Not My Name' as it played throughout
the gym. Unfortunately her hilarious dancing did not help because
BU would go on to drop the next two sets. In the fifth set Binghamton
was unable to regain their momentum falling in a heartbreaker
to the Red Storm. To make things worse there was a cockroach
in the locker room so the girls were unable or too afraid to
shower after the match.
8:00 P.M. - Dinner is at Shannon Bruno's house in Ardsley,
NY. The Bruno's have chicken parmesan, baked ziti, salad and
other random dishes. The food is gone in about five minutes.
Shannon's younger sister Meghan is the entertainment for the
evening attempting to steal everyone's cell phone. Coach Kiriyama
even held the household pet, a maltese chihuahua named Hugs.
After dinner Shannon gives some of the girls a tour of the house
as the desserts are put out. Mr. Bruno had a plethora of kanolies,
cheese cake, cookies and other fattening pastries.
9:30 P.M. - Departure from the Bruno household. On the
way back Alexa once again performs for the team. This time it's
a rendition of Nikki Manaj's "I'm the Best." The hilarious
performance lightens the mood after a tough day. Jen Fiorentino
is attempting to stay up to date on the men's soccer match because
her boyfriend is injuried goalie Chris Hayden. Unfortunately
the volleyball team wasn't the only team to lose on Friday, the
men's soccer team fell to Central Connecticut State 1-0. Vickers
enjoys some Mad Men on her Netflix app, while the rest of the
freshmen sit quietly in the back of the bus.
10:00 P.M. - Bus returns to hotel
.Lights out at
11:00, early morning tomorrow, first match is at 10 a.m.
- Breakfast. Same spread as the day before, but this time the
eggs were in the form of patties, most hotel guests seemed to
pass on them. Assistant coach Reed did enjoy the strawberry waffle
batter, pleasantly surprised when she tasted them as she thought
she was using the normal waffle batter.
- Check out and departure for Columbia and day two of the tournament
hopefully a better outcome. Bearcats take on Iowa in a few hours.
8:45 A.M. - Arrive at gym, team gets dressed and begins
10:00 A.M. - Match versus Iowa. Binghamton is swept in
straight sets for their third loss of the tournament, but the
team's spirits appear to be up with one game remaining.
11:45 A.M. - Lunch before the team heads down to Times
Square for some sightseeing. The girls enjoyed 'Sub-conscious'
so much they decided to go for the second straight day.
Noon - Begin to head for Times Square but the bus driver
goes north instead of south and delays the trip by a half hour.
Many of the girls realized this before the bus driver did. Got
a mini tour of Harlem out of the mistake.
1:00 P.M. - Arrived at Times Square. The team splits up
into groups, everyone wants to go to different places. Some wanted
to shop, some wanted to see Rockefeller Center, some just wanted
to wander. A few of the freshmen, Emily Litwin, Annelot Nieuwenhuis,
Kristin Hovie and Amanda Dettmann hit up the four-floor 'Forever
21' store and were quite excited about it. Assistant Coach Rashinda
Reed along with Grace Vickers, Jordyn Suhr, Xiomara Ortiz and
Alex Roland went to the make-up mega-store 'Mac' and were very
happy with their purchases. Seniors Jen Fiorentino and Julie
Chambers accompanied by their parents made the long trek down
to the Empire State Building. Other sights enjoyed by the team,
NBC Studios and Radio City Music Hall
2:45 P.M. - Returned to bus and headed back to Levien
Gym. Conducted some interviews with the girls asking them about
their favorite things about Times Square. Some thoughts included,
'all of the interesting people,' 'shopping,' 'the lights,' 'the
Disney Store,' 'taking pictures with Elmo and Cookie Monster,'
and 'being together with the team.'
3:15 P.M. - Arrive back at Columbia. Girls prepare for
final match against St. Francis (NY)
- Match against St. Francis begins and the Bearcats quickly take
command. BU disposes of the Terriers in three sets, earning their
first win of the tournament and ending the weekend on a high
note. Iva Partaleva is named to the All-Tournament Team. The
girls were able to shower in a different locker room and avoided
the infamous cockroach.
P.M. - Dinner
and back on the bus for the three-hour trip home.
- Arrive at Binghamton University.
the team's performance over the weekend and what to expect in
the coming weeks, Coach Kiriyama stated, "The tournament
was tough overall and we have a lot of things to work on."
"It was a good tune-up for conference play and we look forward
to working hard this week in preparation for Cornell and Albany.
We've come a long ways and the girls are maturing pretty quickly.
And that's the thing about a young team, they don't know what
to expect so they're gung-ho and eager to get going."