Potsdam falls twice on second day of Oneonta tournament

08.31.13

The SUNY Potsdam women's volleyball team endured a couple of hard-luck losses to finish up the second— and final day—at the Oneonta Invitational on Saturday.

In the late match, the Bears faced a 0-2 set deficit to Oneonta State before battling back to force a fifth—and deciding—set. 

Potsdam (2-2) ultimately fell to the Red Dragons 25-19, 25-19, 21-25, 23-25, 15-10.

Earlier in the day, in what was a rematch of last season's Eastern College Athletic Conference Upstate Tournament playoff, Potsdam fell to Kean University 19-25, 25-12, 25-21, 25-22.

The Cougars (4-0) would become the eventual winners of the Invitational.

"If we maintained our consistency, we definitely could have taken it [the tournament]," said first-year Potsdam head coach Josh Stokes. 

The Bears were able to play themselves back into the Oneonta match by cutting back on their errors while becoming more diligent on defense.

"I moved [Sara] Anderson from the middle to the outside," Stokes said. "Then, put Tia Wright in the middle and that allowed us to speed up our outside offense."

Senior setter Jenna Blujus stood out for Potsdam by earning All-Tournament honors.  In four matches, Blujus recorded 57 assists, 53 digs, 26 kills and 18 aces.  In the Oneonta match, she racked up 19 digs, 10 assists and five aces.  Against Kean, she had 12 assists and six digs.

"She's the heart and soul of our team right now," Stokes said. "We hope we can continue to see good things from her."   

Senior Lauren Manzo exhibited an impressive debut weekend for Potsdam.

Manzo led the Bears in assists for both matches Saturday with 21 versus Oneonta and added 15 more against Kean.  The five-foot-eight setter wound up with 75 assists for the four-match tourney.

Junior outside hitter Liza Fields and senior middle hitter Sara Anderson each found some success on the attack.

Fields tallied 10 kills versus Oneonta while Anderson recorded nine kills against Oneonta and eight kills versus Kean.

Freshman Sarah Becker found her mark against Kean with eight kills.  Sophomore Allie Romaniello had six aces in the Oneonta match.