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Dear Friends, Family, and Alumni,




I hope this finds you doing well. Our home tournament was this weekend and there was exciting volleyball played. We opened with Penn, who has been the top program in the Ivy League the past half dozen seasons or so. We won the match 3-1 (30-27, 27-30, 30-22, 30-26). I was happy with how steady we played. We felt that our middles could have some success against them, and they certainly did. Sophomore Ashley Crenshaw had a career-high 16 kills (.406 %), and senior Ashlee Reed also had a big match with 13 kills (.407 %). Junior Ashley DeNeal had a great match picking up 31 digs - which is one of the highest totals in a four game match this season.


Our second match was against defending MAAC champions, Iona. We won the match 3-0 (30-28, 30-15, 30-20). Junior Shelby Goldman played her finest match of the season so far with 11 kills and hitting .417. As a team we struggled a little coming out of the gate, but started playing at a fairly high level about mid-way through the first game.


The third match was against 30th-ranked Ohio, and was for the tournament championship. There were times that we played as good of volleyball as any team that I've had here has played. But Ohio ended up handing us our first lose since November 2003. The 16 match home winning streak was one of the longest in the nation (interestingly, Ohio tops that list). Scores were 30-21, 22-30, 30-17, 30-18. Shelby Goldman again had a great match with 17 kills and hitting .308. We thought we could give them some trouble with our serving and attacking at the corners - which is an area of vulnerability for them. But the Bobcats gave us very little breathing room with only 13 hitting errors to our 27. Ashley DeNeal played brilliantly all weekend and picked up here second consecutive all-tournament selection. She ended up with 8 aces (.73/game) and 71 digs (6.45/game) for the weekend. Junior Blair Buchanan also made the all-tournament team, averaging 12 assists and 3 digs per game and hitting .413 with 21 kills for the weekend. This is what Ashley DeNeal had to say following the tournament: "Shelby pounded balls, Rico (Eileen Rodriguez) came up with some amazing defensive plays, and Ashley Crenshaw continued to improve her net game. The entire team entered the weekend excited for the opportunity to show off to our home crowd, just how hard we have been working. Knocking off Penn and Iona were both great, and the experience of playing with Ohio is definitely going to make us a better team. I am so excited heading into our next tournament at Virginia so that we can continue to put UAlbany Volleyball on the map."


Our next outing is this weekend at the University of Virginia, where we play the host team as well as Appalachian State and Liberty. Thank you again for all of the support!







Kelly Sheffield

Head Volleyball Coach



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