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Volleyball update from Coach Sheffield

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The America East Conference got underway this past week. We played Binghamton, Hartford, and Northeastern. I’m happy to report that we won all three matches in 3-0 sweeps. After fighting a little bit of nerves at the beginning of the Binghamton match, we finally found our groove and offensively put up some very big numbers - hitting .425 on the night. Our first road trip took us to Hartford (a place we pulled out a close 3-2 win last year), and to Northeastern (a team we’ve never beaten before). Hartford came out fired up to beat us and played with a lot of energy and passion. Defensively, it was not our best match, but we played well enough to come out on top. Against N.E., we played about as well as we have all year, and seemed to gain confidence as the match progressed. Defensively, we were very good (definitely much stronger than we were the night before). Ashley Green, Ashley Reed, and Susan Spierre were getting stuff blocks and touches all night. Ashley DeNeal and Eileen Rodriguez were both inspiring in the back court. This is what sophomore outside hitter, Shelby Goldman, had to say about the week:


“This past week has been one of the most exciting, and rewarding weeks that this team, and this program have experienced. It is so great to get to the point in the season where everyone can start to feel their hard work paying off. We faced a very strong Binghamton on Tuesday of last week who during the first game lost their strongest player to a turned ankle. We remained composed and took the win that night 3-0. This weekend the competition heightened when we faced Hartford, and Northeastern. Northeastern, who has been one of our greatest rivals in this conference were a very talented team, and taking them in three straight was all we could have hoped for at this point. Our success up to this point has been tremendous, but everyone on this team knows that we still have a long way to go, and no one will be satisfied until we score the final point in the conference championship. Every team in this conference is a worthy opponent, and will be willing, and capable of beating any team on any given day. The girls, and I are very aware of this fact and go into every game as if it’s our last. We keep our eyes on the final goal, and for us that will be getting those rings!”


As for Eileen Rodriguez’ countdown towards the NCAA career record for service aces, she picked up 5 more on the week. That leaves her 14 away from the record! This upcoming weekend is a big one. On Saturday we host Maine, who is currently tied with us at the top of the America East Standings. On Sunday we host two-time defending conference champion New Hampshire (both matches begin at 4:00). It should be a very competitive weekend!


Sat. MAINE 4:00pm (following the football game)

Sun. NEW HAMPSHIRE 4:00 pm

As always, we look forward to seeing you in the stands!

Thanks for your support!


Kelly Sheffield

Edited by Dane Pound
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thank you to Coach Sheffield for his efforts and success with the team this season ... i have only had the chance to get out for the siena game ... be sure to keep them on the schedule in years ahead ... how did the saints wind up on TW3 and not a significantly stronger dane team? ... nice to read updates from those in the know ... adds significantly to the board ... is there an AE conference tournament at the end of the season? ... didn't see any dates on the schedule ... ncaas? AE bid?

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From the AEast site:

"The 2004 America East Volleyball Championship will be decided either Saturday, November 20 or Sunday, November 21. The semifinals are set for Friday, November 19 or Saturday, November 20. The four-team tournament will be held at home site of the highest No. 1 seed.

The winner of the America East Championship receives an automatic bid to the NCAA Volleyball Championship."

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Albany is probably one of the few schools that doesn't use it's basketball court for volleyball. As someone pointed out a while ago it's great that they have their own place. With all the talk of new facilities maybe they could think about painting the rest of the floor around the volleyball court to get rid of the basketball lines and make it completely "theirs."


BTW Buchanan won setter of the week again.



     Boston, Mass. - University at Albany's Blair Buchanan has been named America East Conference Setter of the Week as announced by the conference office on Monday, Oct. 11. The sophomore helped the Great Danes to three league victories to open the America East schedule. This marks the third time in four weeks that Buchanan has earned the weekly honor.

     Buchanan amassed 125 assists for an average of 13.89 per game, in addition to recording 12 kills, 20 digs and four block assists. She leads the Great Danes with 774 assists on the season and is third on the squad with 153 digs. Buchanan has also climbed to fifth on the UAlbany all-time assists list with 1,640 for her career.

     UAlbany registered victories over Binghamton, Hartford and Northeastern by identical 3-0 scores to improve to 15-5 overall. This is the first time the Great Danes have started the conference season unscathed and the first time the program has defeated Northeastern. UAlbany also extended its unbeaten streak to nine matches, the program's longest at the Division I level, and has won 14 of their last 15 contests.

     UAlbany returns to action on Saturday, Oct. 16 when America East-rival Maine visits University Gymnasium.

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Would they need that much space for anything other than the NCAAs? UNH had about 600 people when they hosted last year and they've had one of the better AE programs. I'd think 600 in the old gym would provide a better atmosphere than that many in the RACC although the seats are more comfortable in the RACC.


The new "Pablo's" are out. Danes are up to #90.

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