Volleyball Heads to the Towson Invitational, George Washington
Photo Credit: UCF Athletics
ALBANY, N.Y.- The University at Albany volleyball team is set to continue tournament play this week, heading to the Towson Invitational. The Great Danes are slated to face Coastal Carolina, Youngstown State and Towson. The tournament will start Friday, September 13 and go until Saturday, September 14. After Towson, the team will head to the nation’s capital and play George Washington on Sunday.
Friday, September 13 vs. Coastal Carolina (10:30 a.m.)
Friday, September 14 vs. Youngstown State (4:00 p.m.)
Saturday, September 14 at Towson (2:00 p.m.)
Sunday, September 15 at George Washington (4:00 p.m.)
Leading the Pack
- Akuabata Okenwa leads the team in kills with 73, averaging 3.32 per set.
- Malea Stanton leads the team in assists with 181, averaging 8.23 per set.
- UAlbany is first in the America East averaging 12.16 assists per set.
- The Great Danes are also first in the conference averaging 12.79 kills per set.
Scouting Coastal Carolina
- The Chanticleers enter the tournament with a perfect 6-0 record.
- The team won both tournaments to start the season.
- They were predicted to win the Sun Belt East.
- Junior outside hitter Kyla Manning and sophomore outside hitter Anett Nemeth were voted to the Preseason All-Sun Belt Team.
- Redshirt senior Mariia Levanova leads in kills (58) and freshman setter Brigitta Perenko leads in assists (201).
Scouting Youngstown State
- The Penguins enter the tournament with a 4-2 record.
- They are coming off a 1-2 record at the Cornell Invitational.
- They were picked last in the Horizon League preseason poll.
- Senior outside hitter Aleah Hughes leads in kills (66) and sophomore setter Alexia Byrnes leads in assists (191).
- The Tigers enter the tournament with a 5-1 record.
- The team is coming off a 2-1 record at the Rutgers Invitational.
- Senior blocker Silvia Grassini and sophomore outside hitter Emily Jarome picked up Preseason All-CAA Honorable Mentions.
- They fell to Hofstra in the CAA tournament semifinals in five sets.
- Senior outside hitter leads in kills (67) and senior setter Marrisa Wonders leads in assists (224).
Scouting George Washington
- The Colonials enter the match with a 2-4 record.
- Before taking on the Great Danes, the team is playing in the Pirate Invitational.
- Senior outside hitter Skylar Iott leads in kills (73) and senior setter Jaimeson Lee has 183 assists.
Okenwa, Stanton Earn Weekly Honors (9/3)
Okenwa and Stanton each earned weekly conference honors after having stellar performances at the Omaha Challenge. Okenwa was named Co-Player of the Week, while Stanton earned Rookie of the Week honors.
Can you dig it?
Anna Chalupa leads the team in digs with 81, averaging 3.68 per set.
In the America East, the Great Danes rank second behind Hartford in digs averaging 14.58 per set.
Five Great Danes who received America East All-Conference honors lasts season return in 2019. Chloe Evering, Okenwa, and Danielle Tedesco were named to the Second Team, and Vaughan and Cozad earned All-Rookie Team accolades. On top of being named to the All-Rookie Team, Vaughan earned America East Rookie of the Year honors.
In the America East preseason poll, the Great Danes were selected to finish second with 19 points and one first place vote. Ahead of UAlbany was two-time defending conference champion Stony Brook, who received 25 points and five first place votes. Rounding out the rest of the poll was Hartford in third with 15 points, New Hampshire in fourth with 14 points, UMBC in fifth with 12 points and Binghamton in sixth with five points.
In 2018, the Great Danes finished with a total of 210 blocks which ranked second in the America East. Senior Courtney O’Connell led the way finishing with 86, averaging .97 per set.
The Great Danes will head to the Art Carmichael Invitational on Friday, September 20 through Saturday, September 21. In the tournament, UAlbany will take on Rhode Island, Bryant and Boston College.