Manhattan Concludes Season By Hosting Niagara, Canisius
RIVERDALE, NY – The Manhattan College volleyball team (10-20, 6-10 Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference) concludes the 2016 season with a pair of matches at Draddy Gymnasium this weekend. The Jaspers take on Niagara (11-17, 9-7 MAAC) at 1 p.m. on Saturday, then wrap up the campaign with a 1 p.m. matchup against Canisius (7-18, 5-11 MAAC) on Sunday. The Jaspers will honor their four seniors prior to Sunday’s contest.
Manhattan, which hasn’t played at home since Oct. 23, has dropped three of its last four matches. The Jaspers were eliminated from MAAC Tournament contention with a loss at Siena on Sunday afternoon. Senior Milena Janjusevic (Belgrade, Serbia) leads the team and ranks eighth in the MAAC with 2.86 kills per set. She’s also second on the squad with 2.65 digs per frame. Senior Ivana Kostic (Grocka, Serbia) contributes 2.25 kills per set and is hitting .296 on the season, the sixth-best mark in the league. She adds a squad-best 0.71 blocks per set. Sophomore Zoe Lindsey (McHenry, IL) averages 9.20 assists per set, second-most in the conference, while senior Allie Yamashiro (Kapolei, HI) paces the squad with 4.27 digs per set.
THE PURPLE EAGLES
Niagara has secured a spot in the MAAC Tournament next weekend. The Purple Eagles are currently tied for fourth place with a 9-7 league record. Junior Nicole Mathies ranks fifth in the MAAC with 3.14 kills per set, while junior Madison May tallies 2.90 kills per set. Junior Alexis Gray, meanwhile, is fifth in the conference with 8.04 assists per set. She also registers 0.45 service aces per frame, second-most in the league. Senior Alex Stone paces the Purple Eagles with 0.83 blocks per set, and junior Rylee Hunt’s team-leading 4.45 digs per frame put her fourth in the MAAC in that category.
THE GOLDEN GRIFFINS
Canisius wrapped up its home schedule with a 3-2 win over Quinnipiac and enters the final weekend of the season with a 5-11 MAAC record. The Griffs are led by senior Katlyn Tyler, who ranks fourth in the league with 3.17 kills per set and eighth with 3.18 digs per frame. Senior Jacklyn Malusa, meanwhile, contributes 2.24 kills per set. Freshman Cassidy Ceriani distributes 7.96 assists per set, sixth-most in the conference, while sophomore Sara Wesley is the team leader in blocks with an average of 0.82 per set.
On Oct. 9, Niagara snapped a nine-match losing streak against Manhattan with a 3-1 victory over the Jaspers at the Gallagher Center. Canisius notched a five-set win over the Jaspers on Oct. 8, its second straight victory in the series. The Jaspers haven’t lost to the Griffs in Riverdale since 2012, while Niagara’s last win at Draddy Gymnasium came during the 2010 season.
LAST TIME OUT
Last Sunday afternoon, Manhattan was eliminated from MAAC Tournament contention with a 3-1 loss at Siena. Niagara, meanwhile, is coming off a five-set defeat against first-place Fairfield last Sunday. Canisius, which plays Iona on Saturday, snapped a four-match losing streak with a 3-2 triumph over Quinnipiac last Sunday.
HEAD COACH MARK JONES
Mark Jones is in his eighth season as Manhattan’s head coach. The 2010 MAAC Coach of the Year, he’s the second-winningest coach in program history. Jones has a career record of 130-125 and is just two wins away from matching Pete Volkert’s all-time mark of 132 victories. He has led the Jaspers to three straight 20-win seasons (four overall).
TOP 25 VOTER
Head Coach Mark Jones was recently named a voter in the AVCA Coaches Poll. He is one of 64 selectors (two from each conference) responsible for choosing the weekly top 25. Jones was also appointed to the All-Region committee.
Prior to Sunday’s match, Manhattan will honor its four-member senior class. Milena Janjusevic (Belgrade, Serbia), Ivana Kostic (Grocka, Serbia), Kelsey LaCour (Walnut Creek, CA) and Allie Yamashiro (Kapolei, HI) will all play their final matches in a Jaspers uniform this weekend.