Volleyball Splits Tri-Match at Vassar

Poughkeepsie, NY (9/13/08) - The Montclair State volleyball team split a pair of matches on Saturday as the Red Hawks fell to host Vassar College in three sets before coming back to take a four-set match with Wesleyan University (CT).

Junior middle blocker Anna Chesnakova (East Brunswick, NJ / East Brunswick) collected 17 kills and six blocks in the match as MSU moved to 5-3 on the year.

Vassar won their first match in high fashion, scoring eight straight points to erase a 24-18 deficit and win the third and final game of the match. Trailing the entire game, Vassar was able to stay in the game thanks to the play of freshman Amy Basova (Eastport, NY/ Easport Southmanor), who had a number of timely kills throughout the game and totaled a team-high eight in the match.

In their 8-0 run to finish the game, three different Brewers had kills including juniors Tess Johnson (Henderson, NV/Green Valley) and Sarah Potts (Bellevue, WA/Newport), as well as senior Katie Newton (Carpinteria, CA/ Santa Barbara), who also had eight kills in the match.

The Red Hawks jumped out to an early 8-3 lead in the first game behind the spectacular play of Chesnakova who had 12 kills and 2 blocks in the match. Two aces from Potts as well as two kills from Basova allowed Vassar to tie the game at 8.

The lead went back and forth between the two teams before Johnson and Newton had consecutive kills to give Vassar the 1-0 lead in the match. The Brewers went on to win the second game easily, breaking an 8-8 tie to take a 19-10 lead thanks to a superb team effort, as five different Vassar players registered kills, including Johnson, Potts, Newton, junior hitter Caitlin Ly (Chicago, IL/Clayton) and freshman libeiro Mary-Chris Arena (Fairport, NY/Fairport). The Brewer’s never looked back, taking the game 25-15. Sophomore setter Chelsea Mottern (Bound Brook, NJ/Rutgers Prep) also played well, tallying nine digs as well as ten assists.

In the second match against Wesleyan, MSU dropped the first set 25-19, but was able to rally and win three straight sets to take the match in four, 19-25, 25-17, 25-17, 25-22.

Down 22-18 in the fourth game, Montclair State staged their own comeback, scoring seven straight points to win the match. The depth of the Red Hawks proved too much for Wesleyan, as junior Kara Burnham (Moorestown, NJ/Moorestown) and sophomore Devon Johnston (Moorestown, NJ./Moorestown) each had nine kills in the match while junior Karen Martin (Sicklerville, NJ/Washington Twsp.) had eight herself. Johnston and Martin each had five digs as well.

Also contributing to the win for MSU was juniors Raisa Silva (Newark, NJ/Eastside), who had an impressive 20 assists in the match, and Christine Toskovich (Garfield, NJ/Garfield), who had tallied five service aces. For Wesleyan, senior Lisa Drennan (Ann Arbor, MI/Greenhills School) led the way with fourteen kills and four blocks, while sophomore Ruby Hernandez (West Palm Beach, FL/A.W. Dreyfoos School of Arts) had a notable nineteen digs in the match.

The Red Hawks return to action on Tuesday, September 16 as they play their home and NJAC opener against Rowan at 7:00 pm. The match will take place in the new MSU Student Recreation Center as the Red Hawks will play all of their home matches there this season while Panzer Gymnasium undergoes its renovation.