Sunday, September 28, 2014

University of Albany: Van Rijswijk’s Game-Winner Sends No. 12 Field Hockey Past Princeton - UAlbany Sports 2014

Courtesy: UAlbany Sports

ALBANY, N.Y. – University at Albany field hockey (7-2) earned its first program win over the Princeton Tigers on Saturday afternoon by a score of 2-0. Fiori Van Rijswijk tipped in a penalty corner shot by Paula Heuser for the game-winner.

“The word we’ve been talking about all season is “adversity,”” said head coach Phil Sykes. “This is a Princeton team that has won a national championship and had a number of Olympians. We’ve challenged ourselves on the road, and it’s nice to pick up a win over a team with that kind of tradition on our home field.”

The first half got off to a good start for UAlbany, taking a 3-1 shot advantage early on. Kelly Bonner broke through the back line on a pass from Emily White 20 minutes into the game, but couldn’t find the cage on a one-on-one with the Princeton keeper.

The Tigers responded with three shots and a penalty corner of their own, but Maxi Primus kept the UAlbany goal locked down despite the pressure on the back line. Princeton took a 4-0 advantage on penalty corners into the break.

Both teams kept substitutions ready on a hot day in Albany, but Princeton took advantage of a brief momentum shift in less than 20 minutes into the second half. The Tigers had a shot blocked; great tackles from Jaclyn Hibbs and Jordyn Homyak kept shutout hopes alive for the Great Danes.

UAlbany called a timeout of its own to regroup after a Tigers rally in the circle. The stoppage of play translated into the Purple & Gold’s first penalty corner of the game with seven minutes remaining in regulation.

Pahila Arnold had her shot blocked off the corner, but UAlbany earned a second penalty corner on the rebound. Van Rijswijk inserted, and took her place in front of the net as Heuser fired from the top of the circle on a stop from Laura Page. The sophomore midfielder scored her third goal of the season, while Page tallied her seventh assist of 2014.

Bonner found herself open in front of the cage again late in regulation. The senior forward was taken down in the circle with a wide open net, earning the Great Danes a penalty stroke. Heuser stepped up and fired into the lower left corner for the assurance goal. The German native has 10 goals on the season, and notched her 70th career point against the Tigers.

Despite earning a 16-game-low two penalty corners, the Great Danes made the most of their opportunities and have won four of their last five games.

Maxi Primus made three saves in the cage, and recorded her sixth shutout of the season to set a new program single-season record. The sophomore ranks second all-time in shutouts with 14 in her career.

UAlbany continues its four-game homestand with Siena (0-8) on Wednesday, Oct. 1 at 3:00 p.m. Phil Sykes’s squad opens America East play against UMass Lowell on Saturday, Oct. 4. 

#24 University of Albany Football Cruises To, 42-7, Victory Over Columbia - UAlbany Sports 2014

Courtesy: UA Sports

ALBANY, N.Y. – Totaling a season-high 490 yards of offense with 373 rushing yards as a team, including redshirt senior Omar Osbourne’s 193-yard performance, the No. 24 University at Albany football team ran away with a 42-7 win over the visiting Columbia University Lions Saturday night at Bob Ford Field. The Great Danes scored 35 unanswered points in the first half en route to the team’s fourth straight victory this season. While UAlbany stayed perfect with a 4-0 record, the Lions of the Ivy League fell to 0-2 overall.

Osbourne carried the ball 15 times and netted a season-high 193 rushing yards, including two touchdown scampers in the second quarter – a 45-yarder and a 57-yarder. Osbourne accrued 213 all-purpose yards in the victory, also connecting with quarterback Will Fiacchi for a 20-yard pass.

“The blocking was great,” said Osbourne. “The line did a phenomenal job and the receivers did a great job blocking down the field. I just did my job.” The performance marked Osbourne’s 10th 100+ rushing-yard game in his career and third straight this season.

While UAlbany weighed heavily on its ground game, Fiacchi matched his career-high with three touchdown tosses, completing 6-of-16 passes for 117 yards. He also added his first rushing touchdown of the year.

Freshman wide receiver Josh Gontarek recorded two receptions for 29-yards, including a 20-yard touchdown catch. He also ran the ball twice including a 65-yard dash – the team’s longest of the season. Redshirt senior wide receiver Cole King also had two receptions and a touchdown grab, totaling 24-receiving yards, while redshirt freshman Brad Harris made his first career reception -- a 44-yard touchdown catch.

Defensively, redshirt senior Christian Dorsey recorded a career-high 15 tackles (3 solo), followed by junior Kyle Sakowski’s career-high 14 tackles (4 solo), a fumble recovery, and three pass breakups. The Great Danes benefited 14 points off five total turnovers in the victory.

Exploding to a 35-0 head start in the first half, UAlbany broke onto the board with 8:38 remaining in the opening quarter. On the second play of the drive, Harris turned his first collegiate reception into a 44-yard touchdown run, breaking free from the Columbia secondary.

Featuring four straight successful scoring drives in the second quarter, the Great Danes matched the program’s Division I record with 28 points in the period.  

“I thought we played a great first half,” said Head Coach Greg Gattuso. “I was worried if they were ready or not to be honest. But they played as good as we could play in the first half.”

UAlbany made it 14-0 with 12:05 on the clock. The Danes worked their way down the gridiron 89-yards on eight plays, ending with Fiacchi’s 13-yard pass to King. Just 36 seconds later, UAlbany created a 21-point margin, as TJ Idowu forced a fumble on the kickoff and Sakowksi recovered at the Columbia-35. After a 10-yard holding penalty, Osbourne broke through the line and made up the difference with a 45-yard touchdown run.

Forcing the Lions to punt, UAlbany used six plays to cover 64-yards, taking a 28-0 advantage on Gontarek’s 20-yard touchdown reception with 6:19 to go in the half. The bludgeoning continued, as the defense turned their pressure into seven more points for the Great Danes. Rayshan Clark tallied a sack and forced a fumble, cleanly stripping the ball from Columbia quarterback Brett Nottingham and Jack Forster recovered. Like deja vu, Osbourne took his first handoff 54-yards up the middle and into the end zone, giving UAlbany a 35-0 lead at the break.

Slowing the pace of the game down, both squads went scoreless in the third quarter. The Lions recorded their first and only points of the contest with 11:55 to go in the fourth, as Cameron Molina capped a six-play, 71-yard drive with a one-yard touchdown push. Molina led Columbia with 95-rushing yards and 137 all-purpose yards.

UAlbany got the points back on its next drive, using five plays to travel 77-yards. After back-to-back 4-yard runs by sophomore Andre Martin, Fiacchi ended the drive with a 1-yard run, marking his first rushing touchdown of the season. Martin contributed 60 rushing yards on 11 carries.

Columbia’s Nottingham totaled 185 passing yards, completing 16-of-32 passes with two interceptions.

“Really, the last three weeks we've easily handled our opponents and we've gotten better,” said Gattuso. “We're going to have a hard time easily handling opponents going forward, but the big thing is to me they're gaining confidence, and I think they believe in each other, which is big."

Up next, UAlbany’s strength of schedule will get tougher as the Danes step back into CAA play, hosting James Madison on Oct. 4th. Kickoff at Bob Ford Field is slated for 6:00 p.m.

Monday, September 22, 2014

University of Albany Lacrosse Alumni Miles and Ty Thompson Selected in 2014 NLL Entry Draft - UAlbany Sports 2014

courtesy: UA Sports

OAKVILLE, Ontario – UAlbany lacrosse alumni Miles Thompson and Ty Thompson were selected in the 2014 National Lacrosse League (NLL) Entry Draft on Monday night.  Miles Thompson was selected third overall by the Minnesota Swarm and Ty Thompson was chosen 26th overall by the New England Black Wolves.

“I am pretty pumped for the opportunity the Minnesota Swarm has given me to further my lacrosse career,” said Miles Thompson after being selected.

“My biggest dream has come true to be drafted into the NLL, and I am honored for this opportunity,” said Ty Thompson at the Toronto Rock Athletic Centre during the draft.

Miles Thompson is the highest UAlbany player drafted since Merrick Thomson, who was selected 2nd overall by the Philadelphia Wings in 2007.  Frank Resetarits was drafted 5th overall that year by the San Jose Stealth.

This is the third-consecutive year a UAlbany player has been selected in the NLL Entry Draft.  Mike Woods was selected in 2013 by the Toronto Rock, while Joe Resetarits was drafted by the Calgary Roughnecks (and traded to the Buffalo Bandits on draft day) in 2012.

Miles Thompson is the highest-scorer in UAlbany history with 293 points, including a program-best 189 goals as well as 104 assists, fifth in team history.  The co-Tewaaraton winner scored an NCAA record 82 goals last year, finishing second all-time in a single season with 119 points, only to brother Lyle Thompson’s 128, after adding 37 assists.  He played for the Rochester Rattlers this past season in Major League Lacrosse (MLL).

Ty Thompson is one of the top scorers in UAlbany history, netting 154 goals, 4th all-time on the team, and 41 assists to finish with 195 points, the eighth-highest mark all-time in school history.  The Honorable Mention All-American scored 41 goals and 12 assists this year to total 53 points.  He also played for the Rochester Rattlers in 2014 in the MLL.

The pair will become two of several UAlbany players that have played in the NLL.  UAlbany alumni  Mike Ammann, Steve Ammann, Dave Brock, Jordan Levine, Brett Queener, Frank Resetarits, Joe Resetarits, Corey Small, Merrick Thomson and Mike Woods have all played in the NLL.


University of Albany Football Leaps To No. 24 Ranking In Sports Network Top-25 Poll - UAlbany Sports

Courtesy: UA Sports

PHILADELPHIA -- After winning only one game in 2013, the University at Albany football program has turned over a new leaf, opening the 2014 season with three consecutive victories and earning a No. 24 ranking in The Sports Network Top-25 Poll.

UAlbany was last ranked in 2012 when the Great Danes sat at No. 20 in the media poll and No. 18 in the Coaches Poll with a 7-1 overall record, earning the program’s highest Division I rating in history. The Danes entered The Sports Network Top-25 in in Week 8 at No 24, and then topped out at No. 20 the following week before falling out of the ranks. 

UAlbany is 3-0 for the first time since 2001 and is one of 11 FCS teams still with an undefeated record. Overcoming Holy Cross (14-13), Central Connecticut State (19-0), and Rhode Island (37-20), UAlbany ranks first in the CAA and third in FCS for scoring defense (11.0), as well as first in conference and fourth in FCS for rushing defense (72.3). The Great Danes also rank first in the nation for turnover margin (2.67), gaining nine turnovers this season, while losing only one. In addition, UAlbany is tied for fourth in FCS for fumble recoveries, recovering seven, while losing none.

The Danes’ most recent win over URI marked the program’s first CAA victory, as well as Head Coach Greg Gattuso’s 100th career win. Gattuso, in his first season at the helm and 13th overall as a head coach, is the winningest active coach at the FCS level with .758 winning percentage.

A national panel of sports information and media relations directors, broadcasters, writers and other dignitaries select The Sports Network Top 25. In the voting, a first-place vote is worth 25 points, a second-place vote 24 points, all the way down to one point for a 25th-place vote.

Up next, UAlbany steps out of conference play, hosting Columbia on Sept. 27 at 6:00 p.m. at Bob Ford Field.

Team (First-place votes) 2014 Record Points Previous Rank
1. North Dakota State Bison (150) 4-0 3966 1
2. Eastern Washington Eagles (9) 3-1 3819 2
3. Coastal Carolina Chanticleers 4-0 3405 5
4. New Hampshire Wildcats 2-1 3292 7
5. McNeese State Cowboys 1-1 3207 6
6. Villanova Wildcats 2-1 3180 8
7. Montana Grizzlies 2-2 3008 4
8. Jacksonville State Gamecocks 2-1 2825 9
9. South Dakota State Jackrabbits 3-1 2710 10
10. Northern Iowa Panthers 1-2 2350 11
11. Southeastern Louisiana Lions 2-2 2323 3
12. William & Mary Tribe 3-1 2008 13
13. Montana State Bobcats 2-2 1739 14
14. Chattanooga Mocs 1-2 1619 15
15. Bethune-Cookman Wildcats 2-1 1539 12
16. Fordham Rams 3-1 1502 18
17. Southern Illinois Salukis 3-1 1500 16
18. Youngstown State Penguins 3-1 1383 19
19. Eastern Kentucky Colonels 4-0 1186 23
20. Richmond Spiders 2-2 1124 17
21. Tennessee State Tigers 3-1 906 20
22. Liberty Flames 3-1 739 24
23. Illinois State Redbirds 2-0 291 NR
24. UAlbany Great Danes 3-0 269 NR
25. Delaware Blue Hens 2-1 181 NR
Others receiving votes: Sam Houston State 161, Northern Arizona 145, Towson 137, Furman 136, Samford 118, Missouri State 116, Southeast Missouri State 73, James Madison 65, Indiana State 61, Charleston Southern 60, Harvard 55, Bryant 55, Alabama State 46, North Carolina A&T 42, Alcorn State 36, Eastern Illinois 35, South Carolina State 33, South Dakota 27, Maine 25, Presbyterian 23, Wofford 19, Northwestern State 18, Bucknell 18, Sacramento State 17, Gardner-Webb 17, San Diego 14, Abilene Christian 13, Texas Southern 10, Tennessee Tech 8, Princeton 6, Western Illinois 4, Stephen F. Austin 3, Cal Poly 2, Sacred Heart 2, Central Arkansas 2, Western Carolina 1, Lamar 1

Saturday, September 20, 2014

University of Albany CAA Football's Gattuso Captures 100th Career Win In 37-20 Victory Over URI - UAlbany Sports 2014

Courtesy: UAlbany Sports KINGSTON, R.I. – The University at Albany football program scored 37 consecutive points en route to a 37-20 win over the hosting University of Rhode Island Rams Saturday afternoon at Meade Stadium. Improving to 3-0 on the year, the victory marked the first CAA conquest in program history, as well as Head Coach Greg Gattuso’s 100th win of his coaching career. “Every game has tons of adversity and we started out with a lot of adversity,” said Gattuso. “These guys are resilient and they play hard. The big thing is if they keep believing in what we do well, we have a chance to win games and that’s what they did. They didn’t panic, we just kept doing what we do.” In the milestone triumph, the Great Danes racked up 437 yards of offense, while holding the Rams to 286. Redshirt senior running back Omar Osbourne rushed for 153 yards on 27 carries, marking his ninth career 100+ rushing performance. He was supplemented by sophomore Andre Martin’s 14 carries and 45 yards, while Jake Meek led the squad with two rushing touchdowns on seven touches and 41 rushing yards. Totaling four touchdowns as a team, redshirt senior Will Fiacchi threw for two, connecting with tight end Brian Parker and freshman wide receiver Josh Gontarek, while completing 14-of-29 passes for a total of 188 yards. In addition to grabbing his first career touchdown, Gontarek finished with five receptions and 87 yards, followed by Cole King’s five catches for 60 yards. Defensively, the Great Danes once again snuffed out the oppositions’ ground game, holding URI to just 79 rushing yards on 29 attempts (2.7 yards/rush). In addition, UAlbany benefitted 17 points off of turnovers thanks to UAlbany’s hardnosed defensive attack. Redshirt senior tackle Tim Kologrivov was the defensive playmaker of the game, recovering a fumble that eventually resulted in a field goal, and forcing a fumble on a ferocious sack that ultimately gave the Danes’ a touchdown in the resulting drive. Safety Kyle Sakowski also added a spark, recording a 24-yard interception that led to a UAlbany touchdown, in addition to logging five tackles. Rayshan Clark led the team with six solo tackles, while Christian Dorsey also brought down six (3 solo). UAlbany kicker Patrick Toole had a career game, sailing three straight field goal attempts through the uprights, including a 46-yarder and a pair of 23-yarders. In addition he made all four point-after kicks, as well as averaged 61.0 yards on seven kickoffs with two touchbacks. In front of a home-opening crowd of 6,351, the Rams encompassed the energy to jump out to a 14-0 head start in the first quarter. Using six plays to travel 50-yards down the natural grass gridiron, URI took a 7-0 lead on Mack Lowrie’s seven-yard pass to Ross Kim with 11:04 on the clock. In their next possession, the Rams moved 43-yards on six plays, capped by Lyle McCombs’ one-yard touchdown run with 7:32 remaining in the first.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

University of Albany Field Hockey Catapults Into NFHCA Top-10, Attains Highest All-Time Ranking at #7 - UAlbany Sports 2014

Courtesy: UA Sports ALBANY, N.Y.- The University at Albany field hockey squad (6-1) garnered its highest all-time national ranking this week, when the Great Danes took the No. 7 spot in the poll. The Purple & Gold defeated No. 8 Stanford on Sunday for its first program win over a top-10 team. The week of Sept. 16 marks the second straight week the Great Danes have been ranked in the NFHCA top-15. The team achieved a No. 12 ranking in Week 1. Phil Sykes’s squad’s highest national ranking before this week was No. 11, a post the team reached mid-way through last season. UAlbany field hockey faces another ranked foe this weekend, in No. 10 Virginia on Sunday at 1:00 pm.

Sunday, September 14, 2014

#12 University of Albany Field Hockey Earns Win Over #8 Stanford - UAlbany Sports 2014

Courtesy: UA Sports STANFORD, CALIF. – The University at Albany field hockey squad (6-1) earned its first program win over an NFHCA top-10 nationally ranked opponent on Sunday afternoon, downing No. 8 Stanford 1-0. Echo Bretz scored the gamewinner on a tip-in from Paula Heuser. “We had three or four really great chances, but the effort from our team today was outstanding,” said head coach Phil Sykes. “To come out of this trip with the time change and the heat with two shutouts over great teams is absolutely fantastic.” In a quick start for the Great Danes, Kelly Bonner fired wide in the opening moments of the game. After Stanford went the other way briefly, Anna Bottino took a shot that required a Cardinal defensive save with 12 minutes gone in the first. Shortly after Bretz tallied her first shot of the day, but the attempt was thwarted by Stanford’s goalkeeper. Both teams looked to make substitutions early and often on a hot day, with the Great Danes taking advantage early. The Purple & Gold earned its first penalty corner attempt with 15 minutes past in the first half. The opportunity resulted in a shot and subsequent save for Heuser. The Cardinal countered for a series of penalty corners on the other end, before a save by Maxi Primus sent the Great Danes down the field. With time expiring on the opening period, Heuser charged down the left side and found Bretz running onto the far-side post. Bretz redirected the pass into the cage to give UAlbany its 1-0 lead going into the break. Phil Sykes’s squad didn’t fall on its heels early in the second half, as Heuser had another opportunity stopped by a defensive save just five minutes into the period. The sophomore midfielder had three more shots saved by Stanford keeper Dulcie Davies in the opening moments of the half. All seven of Heuser’s shots in the game were on goal. With Heuser having her way in the offensive end, Stanford took a timeout just 10 minutes into the half to regroup. The timeout proved well timed, as the Great Danes picked up a yellow card five minutes later. The card left UAlbany one player down for five minutes at a critical point in the match. The back line responded with a strong defensive stand that allowed no shots while shorthanded. Phil Sykes called timeout shortly after the card time expired. Primus made a crucial save with 12 minutes left to maintain the 1-0 lead, and the Great Danes held on despite the Cardinal pulling their goalie with 3:30 left in regulation. Maxi Primus recorded her fifth shutout of the season to go with three saves. No. 12 UAlbany dominated the game in shots (7-2, 5-1 SOG) and penalty corners (6-2). The Purple & Gold did not allow a Stanford penalty corner in the second half. Heuser has now tallied 67 points for her career. The sophomore midfielder leads the team in points with 22, having tallied at least one point in six of seven games this season. UAlbany’s win ends Stanford’s unbeaten streak at six games, and hands the Cardinal their first shutout loss since Oct. 20 of last season when Stanford fell to then-No. 8 Duke in Durham. The Great Danes wrap up their five-game road test at No. 9 Virginia on Sunday, Sept. 21 at 1:00 p.m.

Saturday, September 6, 2014

University of Albany CAA Football Shuts Out Central Connecticut State, 19-0, For 100th FCS Win - UAlbany Sports 20141

Courtesy: UA Sports NEW BRITAIN, Conn. – Despite a nearly two hour lightning delay between the first and second halves, the University at Albany football program kept up its intensity on the defensive end from start to finish, overcoming Central Connecticut State, 19-0, Saturday night at Arute Field. The victory improved the Great Danes’ record to 2-0 on the season, while the Blue Devils fell to 1-1. The win also marked the 100th in UAlbany’s FCS program history, as well as the 12th shutout since going Division I. As a team, the Great Danes totaled 310 yards of offense while holding CCSU to 195, including just 21 rushing yards. CCSU running back, Rob Holloman – the reigning FCS Offensive Player of the Week – managed just 33 rushing yard on nine carries against the Danes’ suffocating defense. “I’m happy as heck with them,” said Head Coach Greg Gattuso. “That’s six straight quarters with a zero. I’m happy with their play. They’ve been hustling. We were resilient as usual." Quarterback Will Fiacchi completed 13-of-28 passes for 163 yards, and two touchdown tosses to senior Cole King. King finished the night with two touchdowns, five receptions, and 96 receiving yards. On the ground, senior running back Omar Osbourne led the team with 110 rushing yards, matching a career-high 35 carries. Defensively, UAlbany logged three fumble recoveries and an interception. Michael Nicastro led the squad with 10 tackles (5 solo) and a fumble recovery. Safety T.J. Idowu finished with seven tackles (4 solo) and forced two fumbles, while JoJo McClary had six tackles and a fumble recovery. In addition, Rayshan Clark earned his first career interception, and senior linebacker Christian Dorsey totaled four tackles and a fumble recovery. It didn’t take long for the Great Danes to make a mark, taking a 3-0 lead on their first drive of the contest. Driving 46-yards on 11 plays, Patrick Toole put UAlbany on the board with a 36-yard field goal with 8:44 remaining in the first quarter. Back-to-back three-and-outs set up a sequence of punts for both UAlbany’s Jon Martin and CCSU’s Ed Groth. In the first half, Martin punted four times, averaging 38.8 yards, including two that pinned the Blue Devils inside the 20. Meanwhile, the Danes’ defense forced CCSU to punt five times in the opening half. Starting their drive with 7:20 remaining in the second quarter, the Great Danes struck again barreling their way down the gridiron for a 10-0 head start. Fiacchi led off the nine-play drive with an 18-yard pass to Brian Parker. He followed with a 19-yard pass to Osbourne, and then with 2nd-and-10 on the CCSU 44, Fiacchi found King 12-yards down field. On 3rd-and-7, Osbourne put the Great Danes inside the red zone, scrambling 11 yards through the Blue Devil defense after a screen pass. With 3:29 on the clock, Fiacchi capped the drive, connecting a 17-yard touchdown pass to King, marking the senior’s first touchdown reception of the season. His second didn’t come long after, as the UAlbany defense forced CCSU to punt with 1:55 to go in the half. Groth’s 13-yard punt out of bounds gave the Great Danes the ball on the UAlbany-34 with 1:28 remaining. Osbourne’s explosive 11-yard run and Fiacchi’s 28-yard pass to King moved the chains to the CCSU 27. On 2nd-and-10, Fiacchi connected with King again for a 27-yard touchdown reception, and Toole’s made point-after with seven seconds remaining sent UAlbany into the halftime hiatus with a 17-0 advantage. After lightning delays extended halftime nearly two hours, the Great Danes took a 19-0 lead with 11:55 remaining in the third. UAlbany stifled CCSU’s opening drive, as Zach Troutman logged a sack for a loss of eight yards, and Michael Smith’s quarterback pressure resulted in a six-yard loss, forcing the Blue Devils to punt. The snap from the CCSU-20 sailed high over Groth’s head and into the end zone, resulting in a safety. A steady rain throughout the third quarter wreaked havoc for both offenses, causing a sequence of turnovers. Jojo McClary recovered a fumble after Martin’s punt ricocheted off the chest of Holloman on the return. However, the next play, CCSU took possession back on Jevon Elmore’s interception. Fortunately for the Great Danes, the turnover did not result in any points on the board. Standing firm in the fourth quarter, the Great Danes secured the shutout, as Clark picked off a pass, and Nicastro recovered a fumble after another misplayed punt return. Martin had an outstanding performance on special teams, punting eight times for 321 yards (40.1 avg.), including a 53-yarder and two that pinned CCSU inside the 20. After a bye week, the Great Danes resume action Saturday, September 20th at Rhode Island, marking the first CAA game of the season.

Friday, September 5, 2014

Viktoriia Stroilo Joins 1,000-Dig Club as University of Albany Volleyball Defeats Boston College 3-2 - UAlbany Sports 2014

Courtesy: UA Sports NEW HAVEN, Conn. – Down 2-1, the volleyball UAlbany team rallied from behind in each the next two games to win over Boston College in five sets (26-24, 19-25, 22-25, 26-24, 16-14) to open the Yale Invitational. UAlbany (1-3) was down 6-2 to Boston College (2-2) in the fifth set, using a 5-0 run off the serving of Lauren Spreen to come back. The Great Danes were unable to convert the first two match points, but third was a charm after an Olivia Schonewise kill was followed by a Tatum Jungsten-Laini Leindecker combo block for the victory. "Though we made some of the same mistakes we did last week, we made corrections sooner, and that made a big difference," said UAlbany coach MJ Engstrom. "Laini [Leindecker] served aggressively tonight and we got a lot of points because of it. Amanda [Dolan] had critical kills at the end of the match, and Lauren [Spreen] did an awesome job coming into the back row at the end of the final two sets." Amanda Dolan hit .308 in the match, earning 11 kills and two solo blocks. Viktoriia Stroilo joined the 1000-dig club with 27 digs in the match, totaling 1006 in her career. Three UAlbany players earned double-doubles: Schonewise had 14 kills and 12 digs, Leindecker tallied 10 kills, 13 digs and four blocks and Mikala McCauley finished with 28 assists and 11 digs, adding three kills. For BC, Julia Topor led the Eagles with 16 kills, hitting .190. Katty Workman finished with 12 kills and 16 digs, while Sol Calvete had 10 kills and 14 digs. An early 4-1 run, capped by a Leindecker-Sofia Furlong combo block, to lead 4-2. BC took back the lead as the two sides battled back and forth, until at 10-10, a 3-0 run by BC, finished by a Lauren Fields ace, put the Eagles ahead 13-10. At 17-14, Emily Lopes served UAlbany back into the lead with four-straight points to make it 18-17. Back-and-forth the set went as BC got the first game chance after two-straight Workman kills gave BC a 24-23 advantage. Schonewise saved the day for UAlbany, notching a kill, a block and another kill for a 26-24 UAlbany win in set one. With UAlbany leading early in set two 3-2, Topor’s serving and a couple of Workman kills got a 5-0 BC run together. Using a couple of Leindecker kills, the Great Danes got back to within two at 9-7. BC got the lead to five, and following an Amy Hunter kill, Fields served the team through an 8-0 run to bring BC up 22-10. At 23-11, UAlbany did not give in, winning eight of the next nine points, including two Schonewise kills plus a kill and ace from Dolan. A Kellie Barnum kill ended the game, giving BC a 25-19 second set win. UAlbany used a couple of 3-0 runs, including a number of BC attack errors, to build an early 8-3 lead in set three. BC won five of the next six to pull within one. UAlbany kept the advantage off Lopes’s serving, taking three straight, capped by a kill and block from Hunter, to go back up 12-8. BC gained a bit of ground, but UAlbany retained the advantage until 19-17, when BC took the next three. At 21-21, BC went on a 3-0 run to get set point. UAlbany defended once, but not the second as BC won the set 25-22 to take the lead in the match 2-1. The fourth set saw an exchange of runs, as UAlbany took three-straight, then BC got three in a row and uAlbany countered with the next three to make it 6-3 UAlbany. After a UAlbany attack error, Leindecker’s serving, including an ace, sent UAlbany through a 5-0 run to build an 11-4 lead. At 14-8, BC countered with eight-consecutive points to go up 16-14. Two BC attack errors tied the set at 16 as the sides started to go back-and-ofrth again. BC went up 21-18, which UAlbany used a 3-0 run again off Leindecker’s serving to tie the game back up. BC took three of the next four for a match point chance. UAlbany protected after three-consecutive BC attack errors, capped by a Jungsten solo block to turn the tables. Schonewise finished again with a kill to give the set to UAlbany 26-24, sending the match to a tiebreak. BC started set five with a 4-0 run off Fields’s serving, later leading 6-2. Started by a Leindecker kill, Spreen served UAlbany through a 5-0 run to take the lead. The teams exchanged points until the set was tied 12-12. A Dolan kill and Workman attack error gave UAlbany match point, but BC tied it at 14. A Schonewise kill gave a third chance, which was successful after Jungsten and Leindecker blocked a Brittany Pavich attack. UAlbany took a 16-14 tiebreak win to earn the victory 3-2. UAlbany takes on tournament host Yale tomorrow at 1 p.m., followed by Minnesota at 5 p.m.

Monday, September 1, 2014

University of Albany: Heuser’s Five-Point Performance Lifts Field Hockey Past Ohio State 4-0 - UAlbany Sports 2014

Courtesy: UA Sports ALBANY, N.Y. – The University at Albany field hockey team (3-0) wrapped up its three-game homestand on Labor Day with a 4-0 win against Ohio State (0-2). Sophomore midfielder Paula Heuser had two goals and an assist for a total of five points against the Buckeyes. “It was a complete team effort this weekend,” said head coach Phil Sykes. “Today we kept our composure, and despite playing three games in four days I thought this was our best performance yet. Ohio State gave us a good early test, and we were up to the challenge.” Once again the Great Danes came out strong, scoring twice in the opening 10 minutes. After four penalty corners to start the game, Heuser finally converted on an insert from Fiori Van Rijswijk and a stop by Laura Page. Two minutes later captain Amy Nicklin poked in a penalty corner rebound to make the score 2-0. “We started off strong this weekend and wanted to take something good from every game,” said Nicklin. “It was nice to get three wins and come away with some positives.” With eight minutes gone in the second half, Heuser found the back of the cage again on a penalty corner fake from Page and Van Rijswijk. The goal was her sixth of the season and her 14th point of the weekend. Freshman Anna Bottino wrapped up scoring seven minutes shy of the end of the game. Senior defender Jordyn Homyak received a give-and-go down the left side and made her way into the circle to find Bottino. The assist was her second career point. In a rematch of the 2010 NCAA First Round at Penn State, the Purple & Gold out-shot Ohio State 21-3, and held an 11-1 advantage on penalty corners. Maxi Primus recorded her third consecutive shutout win in the cage with one save. In three games this weekend, UAlbany allowed just 15 shots and six on goal. The Great Danes are averaging 4.67 goals per game, and have taken 25 penalty corners to their opponents’ nine. The Purple & Gold faces its toughest game so far this season when it travels to No. 5 Syracuse (2-0) next Saturday, Sept. 6. UAlbany will then continue on to Cornell for a game at 1:00 p.m., in Ithaca, N.Y., on Sunday.

Paltsios Goal, Three Assists Leads University of Albany Women's Soccer to Crush Siena 5-1 - UAlbany Sports 2014

Courtesy: UA Sports ALBANY, N.Y. – Led by a goal and three assists from Caitlyn Paltsios, the UAlbany women’s soccer team dominated Capital District-rival Siena 5-1 to earn its first win of the year. “It is a huge win and turning point for us mentally,” said UAlbany coach Caitlin Cucchiella. “It proves that all the work we have done over the year has paid off. I could not be more proud of the valiant effort and dedication to commit to getting the W tonight.” Paltsios earned a career-high five points in the match for UAlbany (1-2) and set a new program-DI record with three assists in a game. “I am very excited about the win, we came out strong and did not let up,” said Paltsios. “The whole team worked well together tonight.” Four other Great Danes scored their first goal of the year: Kiana Rugar netted the first goal of the game, followed by Shelby Belak, Vivian Vega and Bianca Webb. Alana Brennan earned the victory in goal with five saves, earning her eighth victory in her career to move into second all-time in UAlbany DI history. It is the first win for UAlbany over Siena (1-3) since 2005, when the Great Danes won 2-0 at home. “I truly believe we have turned a corner, and I could not be more excited for the remainder of the season,” said Cucchiella. Cassy Landis scored Siena’s lone goal in the second half, assisted by Tara Sobierajski. Taylor Booth got the loss with five goals allowed and four saves. Siena was the aggressor early, getting off the game’s first three shots. In the 15th minute, Madison Vasquez got off a hard shot, but Brennan made the save to hold the stalemate. UAlbany countered the other way and saw Alexa Schneider make a shot past the diving keeper in the next minute, but the ball deflected off the post and out of bounds. The ball stayed in the UAlbany offensive half as the team drew two corners, but did not get off a shot. Later in the 27th minute, Stephanie Nelle got clear and fired a shot from 15 yards out, but the ball went high. In the 37th minute, a shot from Leanne Miller was blocked right to Vega on the left side. Vega kicked the ball past the keeper, but a Siena defender behind the goalie knocked the ball away. UAlbany stayed aggressive and got a corner kick attempt from Paltsios, and with 37:35 elapsed, Rugar headed the ball into the net to give UAlbany a 1-0 lead. Siena got a chance on a shot from Kensey Waterman in the 40th minute with Brennan making the save. UAlbany went into the locker room up 1-0. Into the second half, a free kick into the box found an open Vega eight yards out straight away, but the header went above the net in the 50th minute. The team got another chance six minutes later, but Schneider’s header also missed. Third time was a charm as on a free kick cross, Paltsios found Belak for the header goal, giving UAlbany a 2-0 lead with 58:03 elapsed. Siena was quick to respond. UAlbany knocked away two corner kicks in a span of 12 seconds, but a third attempt in the 61st minute was headed in by Landis to pull the visitors within one at 2-1. UAlbany got a couple of breakaway attempts in the following minutes, with shots from Morgan Loder and Fitzpatrick going high. In the 73rd minute, Siena tried to counter after a UAlbany corner with a Michele Trembley breakaway, but Brennan saved her attempt. The other way, Vega was set up for a header, with Booth making a punch save. Vega got the ball right back and kicked the ball inside the left post for the score at the 74:39 mark, putting UAlbany up 3-1. UAlbany stayed aggressive and saw shots from Loder and Vega saved by Booth. In the 83rd minute, Paltsios received the ball from 20 yards out, fired and placed the ball inside the right post past a diving Booth for the goal, making it 4-1 UAlbany. Siena got its last shot off in the game from Maria Jones in the following minute, kicking it wide of the right post. Webb missed a header in the 86th minute but got another chance in the 90th, with a Paltios corner going to her. Webb headed the ball in for the score, setting the eventual final score at 5-1 UAlbany. UAlbany will finish up its homestand on Friday at 5 p.m., taking on in-state foe Iona at Bob Ford Field.

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