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Volleyball Claims Another Thriller, 3-2 Over Towson
Updated: Saturday 10/12/2013 (ET)
by Jacob Skipper
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The William and Mary volleyball team played in another all-nighter to cap off mid-term week, rallying to defeat Towson 3-2 at Kaplan Arena on Saturday night.  The Tribe improved to 7-14 overall and 2-3 in the Colonial Athletic Association, while Towson fell to 6-17 and 0-5 in the league.

Box Score

After the two squads split the first four sets (Towson 1 & 3, W&M 2 & 4), the fifth set began heavily in favor of the Tigers thanks to a 4-1 start.  Freshman Kristen Larrick (Bethesda, Md.) had that only point, a solo block, and also ended the run with a kill to ignite a 4-1 run the other way that forged a tie at 5-5.  After Towson took the changover 8-6, W&M had another 4-1 run in its pocket to take a one-point lead at 10-9.  The Tigers tied it again at 10-all, and at 11-all, the sixth tied score of the set, before committing a faulty attack that put the Tribe in front for the final time.  Building off that momentum, W&M came out of the timeout with a kill from Monika Stanciauskas (Wheaton, Ill.), and another unforced error on the visitors' part led to another timeout with W&M standing at match point.  Towson got the serve back one final time, but junior Liz Brown (Ellicott City, Md.) collected her match-best 15th kill of the night and won the match, 15-12.

Saturday's marathon was the eighth five-set match of the year, which ranks third in school history behind only the 2009 and 1986 teams (nine each).  It was also the fourth 3-2 decision in the first five CAA matches for the Tribe, closing rapidly on the record of six five-set conference matches set in both 2009 and 2006.

For the match, Brown's 15 kills were the best of any player, and came along with a pair of blocks.  Stanciauskas was excellent in all phases of play, scoring seven kills with nine digs, a team-best four blocks, three assists, and two aces.  Sophomore Dessi Koleva (Torrance, Calif.) had 14 kills to go along with nine digs, two blocks, and five assists, and Larrick had five kills on a .714 attack to go with three blocks.  Four of the rookie's kills came in that fifth set, where she hit 1.000 and helped the Tribe hit .500 as a team (10 kills, two errors).

Also of note was the play of senior Alexandra Ciaccio (Houston, Texas), who came off the bench in the fourth and sparked the Tribe to the set win with seven kills and a block.  Sophomore Mallory Brickerd (Ashburn, Va.) had six kills on a .308 attack, and a hand in two blocks as well.  The freshman setting duo of Stephanie Paul (North Bethesda, Md.) and Paige Lucas (Asheboro, N.C.) split time on the court, with Paul recording a double-double of 23 assists and 12 digs while Lucas had 22 assists and seven digs.  On defense, redshirt-junior Paulette Grand Pre (Laguna Beach, Calif.) had a team-high 14 digs, while senior Celine Alasomuka (Centreville, Va.) had 11 digs.

William and Mary hits the road for the next two weeks of action, beginning with a trip to the beach next weekend.  The Tribe will play at College of Charleston on Friday night, Oct. 18, before continuing on to UNCW on Sunday afternoon, Oct. 20.

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