UAlbany Drops Non-Conference Volleyball Match to Colgate on "Dig Pink" Night
ALBANY, N.Y. -- Despite double-digit kill figures from three players, UAlbany fell to Colgate, 3-1, in non-conference volleyball action on Wednesday evening at University Gymnasium. The Raiders put up scores of 25-23, 21-25, 25-20, and 25-23 for the four-set victory.
UAlbany got a team-high 17 kills from Traci Vandegrift, who also completed a double-double with 17 digs. Sara Pope, the reigning America East Player of the Week, smacked 14 kills, while sophomore Samantha Brostrom also finished with a double-double of 11 kills and 14 digs.
Setter Gabby Whitworth recorded a match-high 43 assists to go along with three kills and three digs, while libero Viktoriia Stroilo came up with a career-high 36 digs. Stroilo also served up four of UAlbany's nine service aces in the match.
Colgate came out firing in the first set, getting seven kills from Michelle McCarthy, who would lead all players with 18 for the match. Diane Seely recorded five kills on .444 hitting, while Lexi Finger came up with six digs off UAlbany attacks. Vandegrift led the Great Danes in the set with five kills and also combined with Pope for the Great Danes' lone block of the set.
UAlbany fought back to tie the match at 1-1 with a second-set win. Despite only getting nine kills in the set, compared to Colgate's 14, the Great Danes served up four aces and had five total blocks. Stroilo had two of her four aces in the set, while Vandegrift and Alberte Bjornsson each posted three blocks - one solo, and two assists - to lead UAlbany at the net.
Colgate (10-11) came back from the break and got four kills from McCarthy in the third, while Caitlin Cremin came up with six digs for the Raiders. Setter Jackie Macy, who had five service aces in the match, recorded three of those in the third set alone, while also quarterbacking Colgate to a .241 team hitting percentage. The trio of Brostrom, Pope and Vandegrift recorded four kills apiece for UAlbany, but the Raiders had five total blocks in the set to hold on for the win.
The teams battled through set four, with the Great Danes looking like they might complete the comeback late in play. Pope smashed six kills in the set, while Vandegrift came away with five kills an a service ace. However, six kills from Seely and strong defensive play all around for Colgate kept the Raiders ahead to seal up the 3-1 victory.
The Great Danes wore pink jerseys, as the team was raising money for the Side-Out Foundation, which supports breast cancer research. All proceeds benefit Side-Out, which in turn awards grants to medical research organizations and entities dedicated to providing compassionate support to breast cancer patients and their families.
UAlbany (9-12) will return to action on Sunday, visiting Hartford in America East Conference action at 2 p.m.