Potsdam Bears split on first day of home tournament; Clarkson wins two games
POTSDAM – It took just 138 minutes combined for the Clarkson University Volleyball team to dispatch a pair of opponents Friday evening at the North Country Invitational, as the Golden Knights swept both Potsdam State and Buffalo State at Maxcy Hall.
Later, SUNY Potsdam team defeated Morrisville 25-8, 25-11, 25-13 in the nightcap of two matches Friday at the Victory Promotions Invitational at Welsh Gymnasium.The Bears (2-4) were defeated earlier in the day by cross-town rival
Clarkson 25-20, 25-15, 25-18.
The Bears traded points in the first set against Clarkson before the Golden Knights (5-0) made a four-point run midway through the set, taking a 17-13 lead. The two teams played evenly for the rest of the set, but Potsdam couldn’t overcome mid-set run.
In the second and third sets, Clarkson made early runs of 12-2 and 13-7, respectively, to gain control.
Against Potsdam, the Knights won as junior Sara Artus (St. Regis Falls, NY) recorded 15 kills in the match up. Sophomore Courtney Haines (Crestview, FL) added six kills against no errors in 15 attempts, while Rachel Simons (Webster, NY) added four kills with no errors in six attempts.
Lani Durio (Austin, TX) came up just short of a double-double with 27 assists and 9 digs, adding in 4 aces as well. Freshman Holly McDaniel (Hacienda Heights, CA) and senior Alison Schroeder (Webster, NY) tied for the team lead with 10 digs, while Erika Chin (Katy, TX) had 9 digs.
Versus Buffalo State, the two teams started off fairly even, but Clarkson pulled away for a pair of easier wins in the final two sets, 25-21, 25-10, 25-19. Artus and Megan Mahon (Irvine, CA) each had 11 kills for the Knights as Clarkson hit .333 for the match (39-7-06) as a team. Durio added 29 assists, 6 kills, and 2 aces while Schroeder and Chin produced 16 and 12 digs, respectively.
“Potsdam is a much improved team that will only get better this season and our rivalry will always be a heated one,” head coach Johan Dulfer said. “It wasn’t our best effort tonight, but I thought that we dealt with being out of system much better than they did. That’s something we’ve been working on a lot in practice. It feels good to move on in the tournament and we’re looking forward to defending last year’s title tomorrow.”
Meanwhile, Potsdam came out hot against Morrisville (2-4), starting the match with a 12-2 run riding the serve of sophomore Jessica Archinal (Amsterdam, N.Y.), who finished with five kills, three service aces and four digs.
Fueled by the wave of momentum, the Bears cruised through the remainder of the match, not allowing the Mustangs to make a run.
“It was good to see a lot of people contribute,” Potsdam coach Steve Pike said. “Jess Archinal played very well … it was a big moment for her.
(Freshman) Brittany Lapham ran the offense very well.”
Freshman Erin Wagner (Rochester, N.Y.) paced a balanced Potsdam offensive attack with eight kills. Sophomore Hannah Lockwood (Victor, N.Y.) chipped in with three kills, four service aces and five digs, while senior captain Erica Romaniello (Selden, N.Y.) continued her solid play in the back row with 12 digs. Lapham (West Chazy, N.Y.) led the team with 21 assists.
The Golden Knights improved their record to 6-0 overall with the pair of straight set victories, and the Green and Gold will try to extend that mark on Saturday when they face Morrisville State and Hamilton College.
Potsdam resumes tournament play tomorrow against Hamilton at 1 p.m. and Buffalo St. at 3 p.m.