|Manhattan Suffers 3-1 Setback at Marist|
POUGHKEEPSIE, N.Y. - The Manhattan College volleyball team's hopes of qualifying for the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference (MAAC) Tournament took a hit on Saturday afternoon. Manhattan (16-14, 9-8 MAAC) dropped a 25-21, 25-19, 14-25, 25-12 decision to Marist (12-15, 9-8 MAAC) at McCann Arena to set up a must-win situation in its regular season finale on Sunday. The Jaspers need a victory in their final match and some help to advance to next weekend's MAAC Tournament.
With the first set knotted at 5-5, the Jaspers got back-to-back kills from Alexa Lampasona (Remsenburg, N.Y.), then a service ace by Malia McGuinness (Kailua, Hawaii) to open up an 8-5 advantage. After Manhattan extended its lead to 11-7, Marist went on a 10-2 run to go up 17-13. The Jaspers took the next two points to get back within two at 17-15, but five straight Marist points pushed the Red Foxes' margin back to eight, 22-15. A 6-2 Manhattan rally brought the Jaspers back within three points before Marist finished off the set, 25-21. Manhattan hit an impressive .333 (14 kills, four errors, 30 attempts) in the first set. But the Red Foxes' offensive attack was even better. Marist hit .432 (19-3-37) in the set.
Marist opened up a 4-1 advantage to begin the second set before the Jaspers rallied to tie the score at 5-5. After the Red Foxes won the next two points, Manhattan took seven of the next eight to go up 12-8 and prompt a Marist timeout. Grace Hill slammed a kill out of the timeout, igniting an 11-0 Marist run that gave the Red Foxes a 19-12 lead. Manhattan fought off a pair of set points before Marist closed out the frame, 25-19, to take a 2-0 advantage in the match.
After the sides traded the first eight points of the third set, a Brittany DeGagne (Penticton, B.C.) kill started a 10-3 Manhattan run that put the Jaspers in front 14-7. Marist trimmed its deficit to 17-12 before Manhattan rallied for five straight points to push its advantage back to 10. The Jaspers hit a solid .480 (14-2-25) in the third set, which they won by a 25-14 margin.
The Red Foxes immediately took control in the fourth set, scoring the first seven points. After Marist pushed its advantage to 14-5, a 4-1 Manhattan run capped by a kill from LaKell Havens (St. George, Utah) brought the Jaspers back within six, 15-9. However, Marist responded with a 9-2 rally to move within two points of victory. The Red Foxes took the fourth set 25-12 to finish off the 3-1 victory and stay alive in the tournament race. Marist would've been eliminated from postseason contention with a loss.
Mariana Furquim (Curitiba, Brazil) led the Jaspers with 13 kills, and she added six digs. McGuinness notched 12 kills and two aces, while Lampasona finished with 10 kills. Hollegn Henderson (Long Beach, Calif.) hit .667, posting four kills without an error, to go along with 36 assists. Kelsey Huntoon (Monroe, Mich.) tallied a match-21 digs and Julie Bies (Massapequa, N.Y.) collected 10 digs for the Jaspers. Manhattan hit .160 (47-26-131) as a team.
Joanna Foss and Hanna Stoiberg both had double-doubles for the Red Foxes. Foss had 18 kills and 15 digs, while Stoiberg recorded 11 kills to go along with 24 assists. Hill just missed a double-double, posting 13 kills and nine digs. Audra Brady distributed 21 assists for Marist. Brooke Zywick tallied 13 digs, as the Red Foxes outdug the Jaspers 51-50. As a team, Marist hit .273 (56-20-132) in the match.
The loss dropped Manhattan into a three-way tie with Marist and Iona (12-13, 9-8 MAAC) for the final berth in the MAAC Tournament. At 8-8, Canisius is also in the mix entering its match at Loyola on Saturday night. The Griffs then face Rider on Sunday. Iona concludes the regular season by hosting Fairfield on Saturday night, while Marist hosts Saint Peter's on Sunday. The Jaspers, meanwhile, take on third-place Siena (12-14, 10-7 MAAC) at 2 p.m. on Sunday. Siena knocked off Saint Peter's in straight sets on Saturday afternoon to guarantee itself no worse than a tie for the remaining playoff spot.
In order to qualify for the MAAC Tournament, the Jaspers need to beat the Saints in either three or four sets. Even if Manhattan wins, the Jaspers also need at least one of the other three teams squads to lose. Marist, Iona and Canisius all hold the tiebreaker over Manhattan, while Siena would also clinch the tiebreaker advantage if Sunday's match goes five sets.