Kings Point, NY - The USMMA volleyball team closed out the annual 2014 Kings Point Invitational tournament with three wins. Dropping just one set on the entire weekend, the team cruised past Brooklyn College, CCNY, and Farmingdale State.
In Friday's first set against Brooklyn College, a 6 point run by sophomore libero Darin Zacharias coupled with 12 assists from junior setter Riley Huelbig set the mariners into overdrive for the rest of the match. Mariners took the match with a combined 44 team digs, 24 kills and 9 service aces (25-16, 25-11, 25-7).
On Saturday morning, the Lady Mariners again faced Farmingdale State Rams for a repeat 3-0 win. This time it was senior outside hitter captain Cassandra Palma and sophomore defensive specialist Gabby Marionakis at the service line keeping the Rams at bay. Both teams had a bit of difficulty putting a string of points together early in the first, though the Mariners held steady and played with "poise and confidence" said head coach Iain Bradbury (2nd season). Late in the set, Marionakis lead the Mariners on another 6 point run positioning them to finish the Rams 25-15. Leading the attack, junior captain Michelle Danhof posted 8 kills in the 3 set match, followed by senior middle Jennifer Perkins with 5 kills and Cassandra Palma with 4. Freshmen setter Kayla Gleason contributed significantly as well, posting 19 assists in the match.
For the last match of the tournament, USMMA volleyball took on the CCNY Beavers. With a blistering 14 kills at an impressive 0.480 clip, Cassandra Palma lead the Mariners to a 3-1 win. Head Coach Iain Bradbury commented about the team: "We are coming out of preseason very strong. Things are looking good right now, but we are never comfortable and never satisfied here. This season holds a lot of potential for our program and it's our responsibility to strive every day for excellence."
The Mariners (3-0) head to Montclair State University (2-1) this weekend to take on the Red Hawks and the Cedar Crest Falcons (0-1).