Manhattan Ends Season With Win Over Canisius
RIVERDALE, NY – Despite missing out on the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference (MAAC) Tournament, the Manhattan College volleyball team managed to send its seniors out on a high note. The Jaspers (12-20, 8-10 MAAC) honored their four-member graduating class before the match, then went on to post a 25-16, 21-25, 25-15, 25-23 triumph over Canisius (7-20, 5-13 MAAC) in the season finale at Draddy Gymnasium on Sunday. With the win, his 132nd at the helm, Head Coach Mark Jones tied the all-time program record for coaching victories.
Seniors Milena Janjusevic (Belgrade, Serbia), Ivana Kostic (Grocka, Serbia), Kelsey LaCour (Walnut Creek, CA) and Allie Yamashiro (Kapolei, HI) were recognized in a pregame ceremony that included the playing of the Serbian national anthem, and they all played a significant role in their final collegiate match. Janjusevic had a double-double with 16 kills and 14 digs, while Kostic finished with 13 kills on .611 hitting to go along with three blocks. Yamashiro tallied a match-high 16 digs to bring her program-record total to 2,264, and LaCour was on the court as Manhattan sealed the victory.
“I’m so proud of our seniors,” Jones said. “This program has really gotten so much better because of their leadership. This team has been through a lot this season. It’s not how we wanted to finish, but it was great to go out and get two wins on the last weekend.”
Canisius went up 7-4 early in the first half before a Sandra Lozanova (Pernik, Bulgaria) kill started a 10-2 Manhattan run that put the Jaspers up 14-9. The Griffs pulled within two at 17-15, but the Jaspers ended the set on an 8-1 spurt, and a Kostic block capped a 25-16 Manhattan win.
Both offenses were on fire in the second set. The Jaspers hit .379 (15 kills, four errors, 29 attempts) in the frame, while Canisius posted a team hitting percentage of .500 (13-2-22). After the Griffs used a 4-0 run to extend an 11-10 lead into a 15-10 advantage, Manhattan got a kill from Lozanova to start a 7-3 rally that trimmed the margin to one, 18-17. Leading 20-19, Canisius captured five of the final seven points to take the set, 25-21, and even the match.
In the third set, the Jaspers raced out to a 10-4 lead. Canisius trimmed its deficit to three at 12-9, but an Olyvia Chaltas (Temecula, CA) kill started an 8-2 rally that pushed Manhattan’s cushion to nine, 20-11. Another 4-0 run brought the Jaspers to set point at 24-13, and the Jaspers captured the frame by a 25-15 count.
There were 11 ties and seven lead changes in a tightly-contested fourth set. Canisius pulled in front 11-9 before Manhattan scored three straight points to pull in front. After the Griffs regained the lead at 19-16, Janjusevic ripped a kill to start a 5-1 rally that gave the lead back to the Jaspers, 21-20. Canisius scored the next two points to go back ahead, but Lozanova followed with a kill to tie the score. Chaltas and Kostic then combined on a block to put Manhattan ahead, and a Kostic kill set up the Jaspers’ first match point. On Manhattan’s second opportunity, Lozanova put one down to close out the set, 25-23, and send the Jaspers’ senior class out with a victory.
Lozanova just missed a double-double with 13 kills and nine digs, and Chaltas added 11 kills. Marissa Behrens (Honolulu, HI) finished with eight kills and three blocks, while Zoe Lindsey (McHenry, IL) posted 53 assists and eight digs. The Jaspers outdug the Griffs 59-55 and posted a team hitting percentage of .314 (61-17-140).Katlyn Tyler paced Canisius with 13 kills and 14 digs. She also recorded three blocks. Jacklyn Malusa tallied eight kills, nine digs and four blocks, while Cassidy Ceriani distributed 32 assists. Donnett Hickson added 12 digs for the Griffs, who hit .192 (42-18-125) as a team.