Saratoga Springs - The State University of New York at New Paltz women’s volleyball team (26-10) won its fifth and sixth straight matches Saturday afternoon at the Skidmore Invitational en route to claiming the invitational title, besting SUNY Plattsburgh, 3-0 (25-12, 25-12, 25-23), before shocking host Skidmore College, 3-0 (25-23, 25-12, 25-21).
During their six-match win streak, the Hawks have not lost a single set.
While New Paltz and SUNY Cortland each went 4-0 on the weekend, the Hawks had a higher percentage of sets won, which gave the blue and orange the event title.
Following the conclusion of the event, senior middle hitter Dana Kindelmann was named the Tournament MVP, while junior outside hitter Melinda DiGiovanna earned a spot on the All-Tournament Team.
New Paltz came out swinging against the Cardinals in a non-conference clash, overwhelming its fellow State University of New York Athletic Conference (SUNYAC) East Division member on the offensive end. The Hawks took advantage of unforced errors in the first stanza before landing 10 kills in 22 attempts in the second set. With non-starters in the match for the third set, the blue and orange had a tough time finding its rhythm at times, but the reserves performed admirably, closing out the contest and ensuring a straight-set sweep.
DiGiovanna hit at a .625 clip, flooring five kills in eight total attempts. Sophomore right side Michelle Jacobson boasted the team-high in kills with six, while freshman setter Brigid Moore dished out 11 assists and landed four service aces. Jacobson shored up the defense with 17 digs, while sophomore middle hitter Laura Stanhewicz had three blocks.
The Hawks knocked off Skidmore in three sets on its home floor, hitting at an efficient clip in the first two sets before the Thoroughbreds unraveled in the third stanza. After a close first game, New Paltz thumped Skidmore in the second frame, 25-12. The home team was unable to recover, and despite strong efforts from the Thoroughbreds in the third set, the Hawks would wind up with another straight-set win.
Freshman setter Marissa King was a dual threat for the blue and orange, notching five kills in five total attempts while dishing out the team-high in assists (22). Kindelmann mashed 10 kills in 15 attempts with no errors (.667 hitting percentage) and also added three block solos and four block assists for seven total blocks. DiGiovanna had a match-high 15 digs.
For the Thoroughbreds, Kelley Vershbow had nine kills, while Mallory Mendelsohn kept the attack moving with 27 assists. Sam Friedman bolstered the Skidmore defense with 13 digs.
New Paltz will spend the next week readying itself for the 2010 SUNYAC Championship Tournament, which runs from November 4th-6th and is hosted by SUNY Fredonia, the top seed in the West Division. The Hawks, the East Division’s No. 2 seed, square off with Buffalo State, the West Division’s No. 3 seed, at 2 p.m. on Thursday, November 4th, in the quarterfinal round.