special thanks to Steve Sheriden - Vassar Athletics
PURCHASE, N.Y. – Junior Kerry Mackey (Smithtown, N.Y./Christ the King) led a well-rounded Manhattanville College squad with 10 kills and a career-high six blocks as the Valiants started the 2016 season with a 3-1 (25-22, 25-16, 16-25, 25-23) victory over Western Connecticut State University in non-conference women's volleyball action on Thursday night at Kennedy Gymnasium.
It was a team effort for Manhattanville (1-0) in its first match of the new season, with five players recording at least five kills. Junior Asia Reid (Mount Vernon, N.Y./Nellie A. Thornton High School) matched her classmate with a team-best 10 kills, while fellow junior Meagan Dattoma (Port Jefferson Station, N.Y./Comsewogue) just missed a double-double with nine kills and nine digs. Sophomore Laura LiVolsi (Washingtonville, NY/Washingtonville) and freshman Austen Brauer (Hastings-on-Hudson, N.Y./Hastings) chipped in five kills apiece for the Valiants as well.
In addition, senior Megan Quinabo (Pearl City, Hawaii/Kamehameha Schools-Kapalama) recorded the 46th double-double of her career with 15 digs and a match-high 31 assists, while classmate Adrianna Alves (New Rochelle, N.Y./Maria Regina) led four Valiants in double figures with a career-high 20 digs and fellow senior Sam Miano (Bronx, N.Y./Maria Regina) added 10 digs of her own.
Western Connecticut State (0-1) was led by senior Karissa Smith, who put down a match-high 16 kills and added 13 digs. Classmate Danielle Kaminsky also had a double-double for the Colonials with 29 assists and 11 digs, while Cady Cordes added eight kills, a match-high 26 digs and five assists.
The first set was the closest of the four, featuring seven ties and four lead changes. Down two points at 21-19, a Dattoma kill started a 6-1 run to close the frame, with Reid finishing off the opening set with her fifth put down.
The second set started out close, with the home team holding a slight 14-13 lead, before closing the set on an 11-3 run to take a two-set advantage. The Valiants took advantage of four WCSU errors late in the stanza, the last of which preceded a Mackey ace to end it.
Western Connecticut woke up in the third set, putting down a match-high 12 kills to stay alive, but Manhattanville was able to close things out in the fourth. The highlight of the final frame came with the home team up 17-13, when the two teams engaged in a rally that saw the ball cross the net 17 times. After no fewer than four diving digs from Alves to keep the point alive, the Valiants finally took home the point on a Colonial error and went on to secure the victory.
Manhattanville did not hit exceptionally well on the night (.068), but the team was huge at the net with nine blocks, including three solo blocks by Mackey.
Manhattanville, who starts the season 1-0 for the 10th consecutive year, will look to remain unbeaten on Saturday when the squad welcomes John Jay College and William Paterson University to Kennedy Gym for a tri-match beginning at 11 a.m. with the Valiants and Bloodhounds.