Women’s Volleyball Amid Preseason Camp, NE10 Releases Coaches’ Poll, Anna Lonczak
(Pine Plains, N.Y./Stissing Mountain)
COLCHESTER, Vt. – Nine veterans return to a 14-woman Saint Michael’s College women’s volleyball roster that began preseason camp this week, as the Purple Knights kick off their second year under head coach Kim Lissinna. The Purple and Gold’s regular season gets underway on Sept. 7.
Senior outside hitter Tanner Barton (Hudson Falls, N.Y./Hudson Falls) did a bit of everything in 2018, including intermittently appearing at libero. She subsequently led the team in kills (102) and digs (225) while tying for the top spot in aces (13). Sophomore middle Grace Fornabia (Saratoga Springs, N.Y./Saratoga Central Catholic) dropped 78 kills with 17 blocks, and senior middle Allie Statile (Simsbury, Conn./Simsbury) added 74 kills and 21 blocks.
Junior Katy Konow (Lebanon, Conn./Lyman Memorial) handed out 316 assists with 126 digs and 13 aces as the team’s most experienced setter, while sophomore libero Jaeden Cruz (Makakilo, Hawaii/Saint Francis School) recorded 102 digs and 11 aces as a rookie. Senior Anna Lonczak (Pine Plains, N.Y./Stissing Mountain) added 87 digs.
Saint Michael’s begins a 21-match regular-season slate, which includes 13 Northeast-10 Conference outings, by taking on teams from each of the NCAA’s three divisions during its first three matches: Division I Merrimack College and Division II host Southern New Hampshire University for a season-opening tri-meet on Sept. 7 and Division III Middlebury College to begin its home schedule on Sept. 10. The Purple Knights next head to the four-match Kutztown (Pa.) University Classic on Sept. 13-14, where they take on each of their opponents for the first time. Five of the Purple and Gold’s 13 NE10 matches are against 2018 NCAA Tournament qualifiers, including Elite Eight squad American International College.
The NE10 released its preseason coaches’ poll today, when the Purple Knights were placed 14th out of 14 institutions with 13 points. The Purple and Gold played its closest contest in 2018 against Merrimack, which left the league for Division I, falling by a 3-2 decision. Saint Michael’s took the opening set in a four-set setback to eventual NCAA Tournament qualifier Saint Anselm College; the Hawks are tied for fifth in the poll (106). Adelphi University (159) paced the rankings.