VOLLEYBALL WINS PAIR OF LEAGUE MATCHES TO IMPROVE TO 3-0 IN CONFERENCE PLAY
Coming off of playing on the road for the first five weeks of the season, the University at Albany’s Women’s Volleyball team opened up league play this weekend by hosting UMass Lowell Friday night then Hartford Sunday afternoon, earning 3-1 victories in both matches.
On Friday, UAlbany extended its winning streak to seven straight versus conference foe UMass Lowell (25-18, 17-25, 25-14, 25-20) behind a lineup which head coach MJ Engstrom has not used before.
Although UMass Lowell came back to take the second set, UAlbany regrouped to win the final two games of the match to earn the 3-1 victory.
“UMass Lowell kind of jumped on us a little bit and we kind of sat back and made our adjustments. Once we made our adjustments, I was really happy with how we played.” UAlbany assistant coach Josh Pickard said.
Laini Leindecker (15 kills and 12 digs) and Mikala McCauley led the way for the Great Danes with double-doubles (15 kills and 12 digs) while freshman, Chloe Evering proved to fans why she came cross country to play volleyball at UAlbany with 11 kills and 8 digs, in the win.
The Great Danes followed suit Sunday, taking down Hartford in four sets (25-6, 16-25, 25-17, 25-17) with the help of strong serving and teamwork in the final two sets.
“We did well in the first set and jumped all over. We knew Hartford would come back [in the second set]. We knew that was a possibility and we just didn’t make our adjustments fast. But I was happy within that third and fourth [set]; we started to pass which calmed us down which got us better swings which kind of got them a little worse swings and kept their offense down,” Pickard said.
In Sunday’s victory, Mikala McCauley contributed with a team-high 41 assists while Leindecker nearly had another double-double (9 kills, 13 digs) and reached the 1000 career digs plateau.
Thanks to this past weekend’s performance, UAlbany maintains its position on top of the America East Conference, improving to 3-0 in league play and 9-6 overall.
The Great Danes will hit the road this weekend for a pair of matches against conference rivals, University of Maryland-Baltimore and Stony Brook before returning home to play University of New Hampshire on Sunday, October 16 at 2 p.m.