Bears upend Saints volleyball in five
The SUNY Potsdam volleyball team overcame a 2-1 deficit to
defeat St. Lawrence 20-25, 26-24, 23-25, 25-19, 15-10 in non-conference action Friday night at Burkman Gymnasium.After dominating the fourth set, the Bears (6-13) rolled to victory in the final set to take the match as freshman Annie Smith (Burke, N.Y.) put away the final kill.
"It was an intense battle between two local schools," Potsdam coach Steve Pike said. "Both teams had to earn every point tonight, which was fun to watch as a coach."
Pike was particularly impressed with a quartet of freshmen. Smith, setter Brittany Lapham (West Chazy, N.Y.), outside hitter Dakota Pruiss (Wallkill, N.Y.) and setter Jenna Blujus (Baldwinsville, N.Y.) each played a key role in the crucial win.
"Dakota brought a ton of energy off the bench, and along with Annie, really carried the offense," Pike said. "Brittany sparked us with her serving in the fourth set, and Jenna just makes really smart decisions out there."
In the second set, the Bears rode the hot hitting of Pruiss and finished the frame thanks in part to the serving of sophomore Hannah Lockwood (Victor, N.Y.). After Potsdam overcame an early deficit to tie the score at 16-16, the two teams traded points before the Bears took the final two.
Potsdam rode the momentum into the third set, forcing an early Saints timeout and jumping out to a 11-5 advantage. However, St. Lawrence (12-3) made a run to take the lead at 18-17 and hung on to take the pivotal frame.
Smith led the team with 15 kills, while Pruiss finished with 11. Sophomore Anne Fildes (Red Hook, N.Y.) tallied an eye-popping 11 blocks, and senior captain Erica Romaniello (Selden, N.Y.) posted 36 digs. Blujus totaled 27 assists.
Potsdam returns to action this Wednesday, Oct. 6, against Clarkson at Welsh Gymnasium. Match time is set for 7 p.m. The Golden Knights defeated the Bears at Potsdam in three sets back on Sept. 10.