UAlbany Volleyball Takes Down First Place Stony Brook 3-1
ALBANY, N.Y. – Led by Samantha Brostrom and Mikala McCauley getting their fourth season double double this season, the Great Danes earned a big four-set home win (25-19, 25-20, 20-25, 25-22) over Stony Brook on Sunday.
“A wild and crazy match with Stony Brook today,” says coach MJ Engstrom. “We got some really good production out of both outsides this match, and that took some pressure off our middles and passers.”
After Stony Brook (9-12, 3-2 AE) earned an early lead, Brostrom earned a kill to earn the right to serve. Amy Hunter followed with a kill, then a Stony Brook attack error put UAlbany (3-14, 3-2 AE) in front 6-5. Down 8-7, a Stony Brook service error tied it up. McCauley took to serving, leading the Great Danes through a 7-0 run for a 14-8 lead, capped by a couple of Hunter kills. Stony Brook made a charge down 17-12, getting three consecutive points to pull within two, later getting to 18-17. Engstrom called timeout, and the team rose to the occasion. Up 20-18, McCauley earned a dump kill and went to serve, earning an ace, causing Stony Brook to call timeout. Two consecutive Seawolf attack errors completed a 4-0 UAlbany run to make it 24-18. The Great Danes took the first set 25-19.
With kills from Hunter, Amanda Dolan and Sofia Furlong, UAlbany started the second game with a 4-1 advantage. Including a couple of Stephanie McFadden kills and Hannah Dolan aces, Stony Brook countered with a 4-0 run. The two sides kept exchanging points until at 11-11, the visitors won three straight, prompting Engstrom to call timeout. With a kill and block each from Amanda Dolan and Brostrom, UAlbany got back in the set with a 3-0 run to tie it at 14. Following a Stony Brook point, Viktoriia Stroilo served the home team through a 4-0 run to put the Great Danes in the lead 18-15. Up 21-18, three straight UAlbany points made it 24-18. UAlbany won on the third set point attempt to take the game 25-20 and go up 2-0.
UAlbany picked up where it left off in the third set, starting the game on a 3-0 run. Both sides went back and forth as UAlbany steadily grew its lead to four at 12-8, later to 13-9. Stony Brook got three straight points, but UAlbany countered with three in a row to put the lead back to four at 16-12. Stony Brook came back in a big way, getting 10 of the next 11 points for a 22-17 advantage. A couple of late kills from Hunter were not enough as UAlbany fell in the game 25-20, keeping the match lead at 2-1.
Hunter got UAlbany started in the fourth set with a couple of kills, but a Stony Brook 3-0 run in response put the visitors up. Down 4-3, UAlbany used three Stony Brook attack errors and a Furlong kill to go up 7-4. A McFadden kill stopped the run, but kills from Brostrom and Tatum Jungsten pushed the Great Dames up 9-5. Stony Brook slowly cut away at UAlbany’s lead, eventually tying the set at 18. UAlbany got back the lead to go up 21-19, but the Seawolves tied it up again at 21. After a UAlbany timeout, the Great Danes charged forward with three in a row to set up match point. Two points later, Brostrom finished off Stony Brook with a kill for a 25-22 game win and 3-1 match victory.
With the victory, UAlbany is tied for second place in the America East with Stony Brook, UMBC and Providence. The Great Danes are just one match behind first place New Hampshire.
“All in all, we played well enough to get an important win today,” says Engstrom. “We are in the thick of things in the conference standings, and we are continuing to improve as a squad.
Brostrom finished with 15 kills and a career-high 20 digs for her fourth double double of the year. McCauley also got a double double with 42 assists, 12 digs and four service aces. Hunter earned a career-high 14 kills in the match, adding a block.
For the Seawolves, three players got double doubles: Melissa Rigo had 15 kills and 20 digs despite 10 attack errors, Hannah Dolan finished with 42 assists and 12 digs and Kaitlin Costello concluded with 12 kills and 13 digs.
UAlbany will play its lone mid-week match on Wednesday, taking on Colgate on the road at 7 p.m.