Immediate Release: September 3, 2011
STORRS, CONN. -- The Binghamton volleyball team finished off a successful trip to Storrs, Connecticut by splitting a pair of matches at the UConn Toyota Classic. Binghamton (2-6) dropped Holy Cross in four sets (25-22, 15-25, 25-19, 25-20) for their second consecutive win, but fell to host Connecticut in straight sets (21-25, 13-25, 23-25). BU went 2-1 over the weekend finishing second at the tournament.
"We are steadily improving and it showed today," head coach Glenn Kiriyama said. "Both matches were tight and I thought we played well. The team is making progress, but we still have to get better in some areas. Overall it was a good team effort and we are beginning to execute better on offense and defense. It will be nice to be able to build off these two wins."
After falling behind 7-0 in the first set BU settled down and began to come back. A few Holy Cross errors got Binghamton on the board, but a kill by freshman setter Amanda Dettmann cut the deficit to five at 11-6. The Crusaders pushed their lead back to seven, but the Bearcats continued to press. A 4-0 run, aided by Holy Cross error brought BU within two, 15-13. A second 4-0 run, composed of all kills, gave BU its first lead 17-16. Two kills and a solo block down the stretch by junior middle Alex Roland helped the Bearcats close out the set 25-22. Binghamton put down 15 terminations in the frame.
BU again trailed early in the second set, this time unable to dig themselves out the hole. Following a kill by freshman Kristin Hovie, the Bearcats cut the lead to four, 15-11. Holy Cross countered with a 4-0 run to extend their lead to eight, 19-11, the largest of the set. The Crusaders would go on to win the frame 25-15, evening the match at one game apiece.
In the third set BU regained the advantage after a 9-0 run, fueled by four Hovie kills, gave the Bearcats a 22-13 lead. BU would go on to take the set, 25-19, and a two-sets-to-one lead. Hovie, Binghamton's leading attacker, recorded six kills in the set.
Binghamton earned their second straight win thanks to a hard-fought fourth set. The Bearcats trailed 11-5 before a 6-0 run, highlighted by three Iva Partaleva kills, evened the set. From there the set went back and forth until a kill by sophomore middle Grace Vickers gave BU a 21-18 lead. The Bearcats finished off the final set 25-20 on a kill by Roland giving BU two wins in as many days.
The freshman duo of Amanda Dettmann and Kristin Hovie led the BU offense. Hovie recorded a team-high 13 kills, while Dettmann handed out a season-best 45 assists. Four Bearcats recorded at least ten kills. Along with Hovie, Roland, Partaleva and Vickers each had 11 terminations. Defensively, sophomore libero Xiomara Ortiz picked up a match-high 22 digs, while Roland played splendidly in the middle tallying 10 total blocks.
After an eight hour wait between matches, Binghamton took the floor against host Connecticut looking to win the UConn Toyota Classic title. In the first set BU held an early 6-4 lead, but a 7-1 UConn run gave the Huskies an 11-7 advantage. The Bearcats strung together a 4-1 run of their own, slicing the deficit to two, 15-13. Vickers provided a spark during the run putting down a kill and service ace. The Huskies wouldn't allow Binghamton to get any closer however, taking the first set 25-21.
In the second frame UConn raced out to a commanding 15-4 lead. BU was unable to climb back into the set, falling 25-13 as Connecticut secured a two-sets-to-none advantage. The Bearcats' defense was ineffective against the Huskie attack, which connected on 10 kills during the set.
Determined to stay in the match Binghamton fought valiantly in the third set. After trailing 10-6, the Bearcats went on a 4-0 run capped by a service ace from senior Jen Fiorentino to tie the frame. A pair of kills from Vickers would even the set again at 12, but the Huskies took control scoring seven of the next 11 points holding onto a 19-16 lead. A late push by the Bearcats cut the UConn lead to one at 22-21, but the Huskies completed the sweep winning the final set 25-22.
Vickers had a team-high 11 kills for the Bearcats. Dettmann handed out 24 assists, while Otiz collected 17 digs. Binghamton committed 20 attack errors compared to just 13 by UConn.
Grace Vickers and Amanda Dettmann were named to the all-tournament team.
Up Next: Binghamton returns home to face eight-time MAAC champion Siena on Wednesday, Sept. 7 at 7 p.m. The Bearcats are 8-2 all-time against the Saints, winning their last two meetings. Last September BU defeated Siena in straight sets.
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