Oct. 28, 2010
KEENE, NH - The University of Massachusetts Boston volleyball defeated Keene State College, 3-0, this evening in front of a large senior night crowd at Spaulding Gym to secure the first seed in the upcoming Little East Conference tournament. With the win, UMass-Boston captures the LEC regular season championship for the second year in a row. The Beacons, who received 30 votes in the most recent Division III American Volleyball Coaches Association national poll, win their sixth straight match to improve to 24-2 overall and 7-0 in the LEC for their best start in school history. Keene State (22-10, 6-1 LEC), which saw its nine match winning streak come to an end, suffered it first LEC loss of the season and will be the second seed in the tournament. Both the Beacons and the Owls will receive first-round byes in next week's conference tournament.
UMass Boston jumped ahead 14-6 in the first game and cruised, 25-12.
The second game was a thrilling back-and forth battle between the two top teams in the LEC. Trailing 14-6, the Owls got back in the match thanks to Ellyse Davis (Londonderry, NH). The junior middle blocker had consecutive blocks and a kill to get the Owls within a point (21-20). Junior hitter Kristen Girard (Red Hook, NY) had a kill to tie the score at 21-all. The Beacons went back up 23-21 on kills by sophomore middle hitter Shannon Thompson (Moorpark, CA) and sophomore setter Frana Burtness-Adams (Fairbanks, AK). KSC got the next two points on a kill by Girard and a setting error to make it 23-all. Junior middle hitter Molly Rattigan (Dorchester, MA) had a kill and assisted on a block with Thompson as the Beacons won the second game 25-23.
The Beacons pulled away from the Owls to win the third game 25-16 and take the match, 3-0.
Freshman outside hitter Corrine Porter (Huntington Beach, CA) led the visitors with 12 kills while Thompson and Rattigan each had 10 kills to pace the Beacons. Thompson also had 10 digs and two solo blocks. Sophomore libero Bethany Rossoll (Colorado Springs, CO) contributed 15 digs while junior setter Cassy Hanneman (Denver, Co.) finished with 21 assists.
Junior Bridget O'Bryant (Merrimack, NH) and Girard each finished with eight kills to lead the Owls' offense. Levine had a match high 15 digs, junior Laurie Whalen (Niantic, CT) added 21 assists and Davis chipped in with five kills to go with her two blocks.
Prior to the match, Keene State honored its three seniors: Julie Bernier (Valhalla, NY), Sammy Datti (Durham, NH), and Levine.
KSC wraps up its regular season at a tri-meet at Bowdoin College with Emerson on Saturday. UMB concludes its regular season at the Judges Classic at Brandies on Friday and Saturday.
*Release content provided courtesy of Keene State Sports Information Dept.