BOSTON, Mass. - On a day in which volleyball honored their four senior members the Beacons perhaps gave their teammates the biggest gift of all as they claimed their fifth straight and third outright Little East Conference Regular Season crown following a 3-0 win over Plymouth State University Tuesday evening in the Clark Athletic Center Gymnasium.
With the regular season title, the Beacons tie Western Connecticut State University for the most consecutive regular season championships in conference history. The Beacons will now serve as the number one seed in next week's Little East Conference tournament and earned a first-round bye. The 2013 LEC tournament is scheduled to begin on Tuesday with the two quarterfinal rounds.
The winners of those two matches along with the second seed will travel to Boston with the semi-finals scheduled for Saturday, November 9. The championship match will be played at UMass Boston on Sunday, November 10. Start time for those matches will be announced following the conclusion of the regular season this weekend.
Tuesday's win also represented their sixth straight 3-0 conference win for the Beacons since their 3-2 victory over Keene State College in the first conference match of 2013.
On the night UMB hit a combined .258 scoring 37 kills on 93 attempts to claim the top-seed in this year's tournament. UMB had to grind out a 25-22 win in the first game before cruising to a 25-18 win in the second and a 25-15 decision in the third. The victory also improved the Beacons overall record to 17-14, 7-0 in the LEC. Plymouth State dropped to 14-15, 4-2 in the conference as they remain in the hunt for the number three seed in this year's tournament with only one conference match left in 2013.
For the Beacons junior Kirsten Morrison (North Reading, Mass.) recorded a match-high nine kills on 16 attempts to finish with an impressive .500 hitting percentage. Bri Sousa (Swansea, Mass.) and Julia Murphy (Canton, Mass.) each recorded seven kills with Sousa also recording a .417 hitting percentage while Murphy finished the night with a .312 hitting percentage. Senior Amber Clemons (Simi Valley, Calif.) scored a pair of kills in her final regular season home match at UMass Boston.
Senior setter Megan Pollock (Wilton, Calif.) tallied 30 assists to once again fuel the Beacons strong offense. Classmates Corrine Porter (Huntington Beach, Calif.) and Christine DuPuis (Minden, Nev.) each scored three aces as UMB dominated the end line with 10 aces respectively.
Defensively, Elizabeth Glavan (Edina, Minn.) tallied a match-high 20 digs and finished second on the team with 13 service receptions. At the net Murphy notched one solo block and a match-high three block assists. Sousa was right behind her with one solo stop and two block assists.
For the Panthers, Kirsten Perrotta and Kaitlyn Tedeschi each scored six kills to lead their team. Perrotta also managed 20 assists and had eight digs. Kaitlyn Coon recorded a team-high two aces, while libero Cassie Pelton tallied 14 digs. Mikki Taffe recorded two of the Panthers six block assists.
As a team the Panthers came out swinging in the first game as they finished with a .257 hitting percentage scoring 15 kills on 35 attempts. Unfortunately the Beacons managed to close out the opener hitting .320 to earn the slim victory. In the second and third games, UMB hit .219 and .250 while the Panthers were held to .111 and .071 respectively.
Volleyball returns to action on Friday when they travel to Roger Williams University for a 6 p.m. non-conference match.
Volleyball celebrates their fifth straight Little East Conference Regular Season
Championship following their 3-0 win over Plymouth State University.