Wayne, NJ (10/20/11) - Sophomore Marta Topor (Bogota, NJ / Bogota) posted 13 kills and 21 digs while freshman Daniella Salemo (Ramsey, NJ / Ramsey) added 13 kills and 17 digs as Montclair State clinched a berth in the New Jersey Athletic Conference Tournament with a 3-1 victory over William Paterson at the WPU Rec Center on Thursday.
Junior Alyssa Batiste (Manahawkin, NJ / Southern Regional) added 11 kills, three aces and 12 digs as the Red Hawks knocked off the Pioners, 25-22, 22-25, 25-20 and 25-19. The win put MSU (10-14) at 3-3 in the NJAC, tied with Rutgers-Camden for fourth place. Montclair owns the tiebreaker with the Scarlet Raptors as both teams have one league match remaining. MSU defeated Rutgers-Camden 3-0 at the Panzer Athletic Center on September 22.
Montclair State and Rutgers-Camden will face each other in the opening round of the tourmament as the No. 4 and No. 5 seeds on Tuesday, November 1 with the site to be determined. Last year, the Red Hawks fell to the Scarlet Raptors in the opening round in Camden.
MSU takes on first-place Richard Stockton in its final league match while Rutgers-Camden battles second-place Ramapo with both matches taking place on October 27. If Rutgers-Camden wins and MSU loses, then the Red Hawks would go to Camden, NJ for the opening round. A Red Hawk victory or both teams winning or losing would give Montclair State home court advantage for that match.
Tied at 19-19, the Red Hawks won six of the final nine points to come away with a 25-22 opening victory. The Pioneers responded by jumping out to a 13-2 lead in the second, then held off a late MSU rally for a 25-22 win to even the match at 1-1. Knotted at 18-18, MSU used the serve of sophomore Kimberly Butrico (Cresskill, NJ / Cresskill) to reel off the next four points, and the Red Hawks eventually won the third set by a 25-20 score. WP scored the first point of the fourth, but Montclair State never trailed again in winning the deciding set, 25-19.
Sara Girgus (Green Brook, NJ / Watchung Hills) had six kils, eight digs and four total blocks for MSU while setter Angela Campo (Washington Township, NJ / Westwood) posted 44 assists and 19 digs. Libero Katilyn Irwin (Cranford, NJ / Cranford) led the team with 24 digs along with four service aces. Freshman Erika Gerner (Sparta, NJ / Sparta) had five kills.
The Red Hawks return home for a tri-match on Saturday, October 22. Montclair State faces College of St. Elizabeth at 11:00 am before taking on Hunter College at 3:00 pm.