Comeback Not Enough as Volleyball Loses in Four in MAAC Championship
Courtesy: Canisius College Athletics
Senior Morgan Ammons led the Griffs with 15 kills while Brittany Gerde had 11 kills and sophomore Renee Lettow had 10 kills. Freshman setter Janelle Davis had 43 assists, Michelle Godfrey had four blocks and Sarah Podlesh had 18 digs.
“While we fell short of our season goal, it doesn’t tarnish the good season that we had,” Canisius coach Cathy Hummel said. “This team has created a culture for our program that will last for years to come. I’m extremely proud of each and every one of them.”
Canisius was able to control Siena’s offensive duo of Kelly Hummel and Burgandy McCurty in the first set, but Hummel and McCurty did their damage from the service line as the Saints won 11 of their combined 15 service points in the set. McCurty led a seven-point run that turned a 5-3 Canisius lead into a 10-5 Siena lead. The Saints then extended their lead on the serve of Hummel, pushing a 13-8 score into a 19-8 advantage. The Griffs could only get as close as six as the Saints took the first set.
The teams stayed close for the majority of the second set before the Saints pulled away late. Siena scored five consecutive points to take an early 5-1 lead. Canisius battled back to tie the set at 9-9 on a block by Gerde and Godfrey. Siena regained the lead by winning the next two points and kept the advantage for the rest of the set. After a kill by Gerde cut the Siena lead to 17-15, the Saints scored eight of the final 11 points in the set to go up 2-0 in the match.
The third set featured a match point for the Saints, and it took three set points for the Griffs to force a fourth set. Siena had a match point at 24-23 but a kill by Ammons would fall in along the front row to tie it at 24-24. Canisius had its first set point at 25-24, but a back-row attack from McCurty clipped the tape and dropped in to tie it at 25-25. McCurty had another kill on Canisius’ second set point, but with the score 27-26 the Griffs would get a kill from Gerde to win the set.
The Griffs would mount a comeback in the fourth set but were never able to take the lead. Siena built a 13-6 advantage and Canisius crawled its way back into the match. The Griffs methodically trimmed the Siena lead and eventually tied it at 19-19 on an ace by Ammons. With the score tied at 20-20 the Saints would use a three-point run to regain control of the set and eventually win the match.
McCurty led all players with 29 kills while Hummel had 13 kills for the Saints (19-12). April London had 58 assists.
Match Notes: Canisius made its eight MAAC Championship appearance... The Griffs participated in the 10-team postseason in 2006 in Lake Buena Vista, Fla... The team last qualified for a four-team MAAC Championship in 1993... Jasmine Brennan played in the second set for the Griffs, her first appearance since the Oct. 26 match against Siena... Ammons led the Griffs in kills for the 16th time this season and had double-digit kills for the 17th time... Davis had 40-plus assists in a match for the first time since Oct. 19, against Rider... Davis finishes her freshman season with 938 assists, the second-most by a freshman setter in program history... Podlesh finishes her career playing in 433 career sets, the second most in program history... Canisius was the No. 3 seed in the tournament for the fourth time in its eight appearances... The 17 victories tie for the second-most in the past 20 seasons.