Volleyball: Potsdam eliminated by Plattsburgh
The SUNY Potsdam volleyball team's bid for a SUNYAC championship ended with a 25-17, 25-18, 25-19 first round SUNYAC tournament loss to fourth-seeded Plattsburgh at New Paltz on Friday evening.
The fifth-seeded Bears (15-16 overall) will now wait to see if it has earned a possible ECAC tournament bid.
In recent weeks, Potsdam had battled through adversity with a litany of injuries. Key players such as senior middle hitter Sara Anderson (Lake George, N.Y. / Lake George) was not able to play due to injury and senior setter Jenna Blujus (Baldwinsville, N.Y. / C.W. Baker) had played through some nagging pain.
Nonetheless, the Bears fought competitively throughout, and threatened to take the lead late in the third set when it closed to within a one-point deficit at 20-19 on a Dakota Pruiss kill. There were five ties and three lead changes in the third set alone.
Pruiss, a senior outside hitter/right side from Wallkill, N.Y., had come strong down the stretch especially on the defensive front. She had tallied at least eight kills in four of her previous six matches and racked up double digit digs during the same span.
Pruiss was once again a factor as she finished with a team-high 11 digs and seven kills. Junior outside hitter Liza Fields (Duanesburg, N.Y. / Duanesburg) recorded a team-high nine kills and added eight digs. Senior setter Lauren Manzo (Clovis, Calif. / San Joaquin) led the Bears with 26 assists. Freshman middle hitter Sarah Becker (Troy, N.Y. / Tamarac) had six kills.
Plattsburgh was able to maintain control with a more efficient hitting percentage (.306 to the Bears' .168) and a slight advantage in the passing game (39 assists to 31).
The Cardinals were once again led by graduate student outside hitter/right side Rosi Cummings and sophomore middle hitter Laura Diehl, who each had 11 kills. Each had come up with big performances against the Bears in the previous two meetings that were split between the teams. Junior outside hitter Maggie Schrantz also contributed with 10 kills and eight digs.
Plattsburgh (17-14) advances to play No. 1 New Paltz on Saturday at 6 p.m. in a SUNYAC semifinal.