Oct. 29, 2011
WALTHAM, Mass. - In their 2011 regular season finale the 18th ranked Beacons (24-4) earned a hard-fought victory as they defeated Brandeis University (9-18) by the final score of 3-0 Saturday afternoon at Auerbach Arena.
Brandeis hung with UMB in the early going of the first set. Neither team was able to string together more than two consecutive points in the opening stages. The Beacons took a 10-8 lead on a service aces by junior setter Frana Burtness-Adams (Fairbanks, Alaska), but the Judges answered with six of the next eight points of the match.
A Brandeis error halted the momentum, and the Beacons were able to take advantage as the visitors went on a 9-2 run of their own. Two kills each from sophomore outside hitter Corrine Porter (Huntingdon Beach, Calif.) and rookie middle hitter Kirsten Morrison (North Reading, Mass.) highlighted the run that gave UMB a 21-16 lead. The teams traded the next five points before senior middle hitter Molly Rattigan (Dorchester, Mass.) closed the set out with back-to-back kills.
UMass Boston asserted themselves in the next two sets, as they never trailed. The Beacons opened up early leads of 8-4 in the second set and 8-3 in the third. The Judges closed to within 10-9 in the second set, but two straight kills by junior middle hitter Shannon Thompson (Moorpark, Calif.) halted the momentum as the visitors closed the second on a 15-5 run. In the third set, after trailing by as many as seven, 16-9, after a timeout, the Judges were able to close within four on a few occasions but could not get over the hump.
UMass was paced by Thompson, who finished with 18 kills, including eight in the third set alone. Rattigan had eight kills and four block assists. Senior setter Cassy Hanneman (Denver, Colo.) had 33 assists, while junior libero Kayla Wilson (San Jose, Calif.) had 16 digs.
Offensively, Brandeis was led by Hood, who totaled 11 kills. Outside hitter Si-Si Hensley added eight kills and hit at a .368 clip. Hensley also topped the squad with 12 digs. Einhorn contributed 22 assists.
Volleyball will return to action next weekend when they travel to Plymouth State University for the 2011 Little East Conference Tournament. The Beacons will enter the tournament as the number-two seed and will face the winner of the \#3 Western Connecticut State University and \#6 Rhode Island College match. Start times and the tournament bracket will be available at www.littleeast.com.
Information for this release provided by Brandeis University sports information department.