Baltimore, Md.—UMBC volleyball suffered a 3-2 setback at the hands of Albany on Friday afternoon. The Retrievers and Great Danes exchanged set wins, but Albany grabbed the deciding fifth set, 15-12. Freshman Makenzie Morgen (Appleton, Wisc./Appleton East) led the way with 12 kills and ten digs, as the Retrievers fall to 7-10, 1-2 AE on the year.
The first set saw both teams exchange points in the early going, before a run at the end of the set gave the Retrievers the lead for good. Down 18-16, UMBC clawed their way back to take a 21-20 lead after a pair of attack errors by the Great Danes. From there, UMBC would give up just one point as a kill from Sherelle Walker (New Freedom, Pa./Susquehannock) ended the set 25-21.
Set two saw Albany jump on the Retrievers early, forcing Coach Blanchard to use a timeout trailing 5-1. The Retrievers never got within four points, as Albany took set two, 25-14, tying the match heading to the break.
The Great Danes took a 4-1 lead early into the third frame, but UMBC never stopped fighting, retaking the lead after a 5-0 run capped by a Makenzie Morgen service ace. Claudia Lopez (Guaynabo, Puerto Rico/Academia Maria Reina) forced a timeout after she laid down a service ace. UMBC would extend their lead to 16-11 after Morgen had her second ace of the set. Albany tried to cut into the deficit, getting all the way to 21-20, but the Retrievers held on for a 25-23 win to take a 2-1 lead.
Set four was all the same story as the second, as Albany jumped on the Retrievers early, tying the match at 2-2 after a 25-16 set four win. In the decisive fifth set, Albany took advantage of a pair of Retriever errors to lead 4-0 early. The Dawgs never quit, as they fought all the way back to tie the set at 8-8 after a 5-0 run. However the Great Danes had the final say, rattling off four straight points to win the set 15-12, and the match 3-2.
Morgen led the way with 12 kills for the Retrievers. Morgen also added ten digs and two aces. Senior Sherelle Walker and freshman Maddie Schneider (Olathe, Kan./Olathe Northwest) each reached double digit kills with 11 and ten respectively. Schneider added a team best 19 digs and four blocks. Walker chipped in nine blocks in the loss.
The Retrievers close out the home stand on "Dig Pink" day against Binghamton on Sunday. First serve is slated for 1:00 p.m.