Offensive Explosion Propels Mariners to 3-1 Victory over Manhattanville

Cassandra Palma
Cassandra Palma

Kings Point, NY – The USMMA volleyball team blasted a season high 56 kills en route to a 3-1 triumph over Manhattanville Wednesday inside O'Hara Hall.  Cassandra Palma (Loomis, CA), Caitlin McCabe (Edgewood, NM) and Michelle Danhof (San Antonio, TX) all recorded double-doubles in the win.  Palma notched match highs of 19 kills and 26 digs as the victory snaps a four game slide for USMMA and puts them back at the .500 mark for the year.

Riley Huelbig (Poolesville, MD) also had her best statistical night of the season, racking up 45 assists.  Danhof finished the match with 15 kills and 17 digs while McCabe had ten kills and 12 digs.

Merchant Marine (9-9) ran away with the opening set, claiming 16 of the final 19 points, eventually taking the frame, 25-12.  Palma had her most effective set of the match to start, tallying six kills along with a .455 hitting percentage.

Manhattanville (8-13) turned the tables on the Mariners in the second set and used a late surge of its own to win the game, 25-20.  Susy Camaj paced the Valiants offense with 12 kills on the night and Alyssa Casino anchored the visitors' defense with 26 digs.

The two sides were neck and neck in the third set with neither team able to gain more than a three point advantage.  The set featured ten ties as well as seven lead changes but a block from Charlene Swick (Incline Village, NV) and Palma gave Merchant Marine two set points at 24-22.  The Valiants were able to fight off the first but a Palma kill put away the set, 25-23, and moved the Mariners to within one set of the match.

The USMMA attack ripped 17 kills in the final set and had the home team leading through the middle stages of the game.  However, Manhattanville was able to chip away at its deficit and leveled the score at 22-22.  Danhof supplied two kills over the next three rallies to set up the first match point at 24-23.  Palma committed an attack error on the next point but quickly rebounded to provide kills on back-to-back points to secure the set, 26-24, and the match, 3-1.

The Mariners return to action this Saturday as they travel to William Paterson for a tri-match that also features York (NY).