HAWKS RETURN TO THE HYTCHE FOR HOME OPENER, TAKE ON COPPIN STATE
MEAC Preseason Player of the Year Saitaua Iosia and the Hawks open at home on Friday.
MEAC Preseason Player of the Year Saitaua Iosia and the Hawks open at home on Friday.

Oct. 4, 2012

Game Notes - UMES vs. Coppin State

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PRINCESS ANNE, Md. -- UMES will play at the Hytche Athletic Center for the first time as the defending MEAC champion on Friday, October 5th at 7 p.m. The Maroon and Gray will play in-state rival Coppin State for their home opener and first of six straight matches in Princess Anne. The Hawks, currently tied for first place in the MEAC North, stand at 16-4 and 2-0 in conference play. Coppin State is in third place in the Northern Division at 2-1 with a 6-8 overall tally.

The Hawks will look to defend a 24-match winning streak, the longest in Division I. In addition, UMES has not lost a home conference match since 2006.

UMES COMES BACK TO DEFEAT HOWARD 3-2
Down two sets, UMES came back to earn victory in Washington D.C. over Howard in five sets (18-25, 23-25, 25-19, 25-20, 15-8) for a second straight conference win and take first place in the MEAC North. It is UMES's fifth win in as many chances in five-set matches.

Maline Vaitai earned a double double with a team-best 19 kills and 13 digs. In her return to the UMES lineup, Saitaua Iosia also got a double double, earning 16 kills and 14 digs. Emily Shannon came up big in the tiebreaker set with three kills and the game-winning block, finishing with seven kills and three blocks overall.

TOP SERVING TEAM IN THE CONFERENCE
The Hawks lead the MEAC and stand fourth Division I in aces per set, averaging 1.90 aces per game and totaling 146 in 77 sets. Kaveinga Lea'Aetoa stands at 10th in D-I with 30 aces in 58 games for 0.52 each set. UMES led all of D-I in aces per set in 2007, 2009 and 2010.

 

 

UMES IS THE TOP HITTING TEAM IN THE MEAC......
UMES is the top hitting team in the MEAC, earning a .236 hitting percentage so far in 2012, standing over 30 percentage points above second place Hampton at .205. Kaveinga Lea'Aetoa is leading the conference by hitting .332 with 115 kills and just 36 errors in 238 attacks. Three other UMES players are in the top-eight: Bridget Ebster-Schwarzenberger is 5th at .284, Ndidi Ibe stands at 7th at .261, and Victoria Williams is 10th at .237.

...AND THE TOP DEFENSIVE TEAM IN THE LEAGUE
The Hawks have allowed opponents to hit just .171, almost 20 percentage points ahead of second place Coppin State at .190. UMES averages 1.86 blocks per set, second in the MEAC, led by Ndidi Ibe's 1.03 per set, also second in the conference. UMES leads the conference in total blocks with 240.

TOP UMES BLOCKERS OF ALL-TIME
After a four-block performance against Jackson State, Kaveinga Lea'Aetoa earned her 204th block in her UMES career, passing Samantha Chukwura as the top blocker in Hawks history. Chukwura earned 203 blocks from 2007-10. Lea'Aetoa has 39 blocks this season. Not far behind Lea'Aetoa is Ndidi Ibe, who has 192 blocks with UMES, including 79 this season. Ibe has 289 blocks in her career, including two years at Navy.

VAITAI APPROACHING 1,000-KILL CLUB
Maline Vaitai stands at 938 kills in her career, just 62 away from becoming a member of the 1,000-kill club. Vaitai had a season-high 21 kills in a five-set win over North Texas on September 14th. The 2010 MEAC Rookie of the Year had 407 kills as a freshman and 317 in 2011, currently standing with 214 this year. The UMES 1,000-kill club in the 25-point era includes Whitney Johnson (1,225) and Caylin Woodward (1,132).

VICIC TRYING TO BE UMES'S TOP ALL-TIME SETTER
Jessie Vicic, a member of the All-MEAC Preseason Team, is closing in on the all-time assists mark in UMES history. Currently, the sophomore stands at 1,996 assists, third all-time in Hawks history. This season, Vicic has a MEAC-best 787 assists, earning 1,209 in 2011. Christina Estebané is currently the all-time leader with 2,233 assists from 2007-08, and Yael Rozner is second, getting 2,085 assists from 2005-06.

CALIFORNIA CRUSHER
Already surpassing her point total from her freshman year, sophomore right side hitter Victoria Williams has earned 176 kills, hitting .237, with 51 blocks, each mark second-strongest on the team. The Los Angeles native has earned a MEAC Player of the Week honor and nine double digit kill matches, including seven of the last nine UMES matches.

SCOUTING THE OPPONENT:
Coppin State is currently in third place in the MEAC Northern Division with a 2-1 conference standing after falling to Hampton last Sunday in four sets. Overall, the Eagles are 6-8 under first year head coach Ashley Preston, the school's best win total since 2005, aided by the MEAC's second best opposing hitting percentage at .190. The team's leading offensive player, sophomore outside hitter Ariel Richard, has 173 kills and 13 aces this year. In the middle stands freshman Kandace Thomas, who sports a team-high 31 blocks with 56 kills. Sophomore libero Gabrielle Otero is second in the MEAC with 4.48 digs per set, totaling 224, adding 17 aces.

ASU TOURNAMENT CHAMPIONS
Going 4-0 in Montgomery, Alabama, the Hawks are the champions of the ASU Tournament after defeating North Texas and Alabama State on Friday, then Troy and Jackson State on Saturday. A number of UMES players set new career highs: Victoria Williams earned 19 kills against North Texas, Bridget Ebster-Schwarzenberger had 15 kills against UNT and five aces versus Troy, Jessie Vicic set 62 assists in UMES's opening match and Megan Mueller had 14 digs against Troy.

WVU GOLDEN HORSESHOE CHALLENGE CHAMPION
The Hawks won all three matches in the WVU Golden Horseshoe Challenge, including against tournament host and Big 12 Conference member West Virginia, to win their second invitational of the season. UMES defeated WVU in four sets, following up with wins against St. Peter's and Wright State. Kaveinga Lea'Aetoa was named MVP with 26 kills, while Victoria Williams and Bridget Ebster-Schwarzenberger earned All-Tournament Team.

HAWKS TAKE SECOND PLACE IN TIGER INVITATIONAL
The Maroon and Gray had a strong showing in the Tiger Invitational in Savannah, going 4-1 over the three days to take second place. UMES went 1-1 on the first day with wins over Southern Utah and a loss to New Mexico, ending with three straight shutout victories over UNC Asheville, Kennesaw State and tournament host Savannah State. Saitaua Iosia finished with 59 kills and 43 digs in the tournament, while Kaveinga Lea'Aetoa hit .324 with 35 kills and 13 service aces.

HAWKS WIN THE SFC TERRIER INVITATIONAL
UMES is the champion of the SFC Terrier Invitational after the Hawks swept the competition in the Big Apple, defeating NJIT, tournament host St. Francis (NY) and Radford, all in four sets, to begin the season at 3-0. Iosia led the Hawks with 64 kills and 47 digs, earning double doubles in all three matches. Ndidi Ibe and Kaveinga Lea'Aetoa each hit over .420 with at least 25 kills and 12 blocks each.

IOSIA NAMED AVCA DIVISION I PLAYER OF THE WEEK
For the second time in her career, Saitaua Iosia was honored as the American Volleyball Coaches Association Division I Player of the Week for the period ending August 26th. She is the only player in MEAC history to earn this honor. She had three double doubles in the SFC Terrier Invitational, finishing with 64 kills with a .357 hitting percentage and 47 digs.

METIL - BEST COACH IN UMES HISTORY
Don Metil won his 100th match at UMES on September 30th, 2011 with a shutout victory over Alabama State. He also earned his 200th victory as a head coach on November 18th, 2011 after a five-set win over North Carolina Central. With the Hawks, Metil is the winningest coach in UMES volleyball history with a 133-43 record. Metil's first win in Division I came at Coppin State against UMES 3-2 on Sept. 25, 2005, while his first UMES win came against Coppin State 3-0 on Aug. 24, 2007. He has earned over 200 victories including stops at Notre Dame (MD), Lees-McRae and Coppin State.

UMES LONGEST ACTIVE HOME WINNING STREAK......
Winning their last 24 matches in Princess Anne, the Hawks have the longest home winning streak in Division I. UMES took over the top spot after previous the previous leader, Texas, lost to Minnesota on Sept. 7, 2012. UMES's last loss in the Hytche Athletic Center came on Sept. 26, 2009 with a 3-0 defeat from Sacred Heart. The first home match this season will be October 5th when the Hawks play Coppin State at 7 p.m.

......AND LONGEST ACTIVE MEAC WINNING STREAK
After a perfect MEAC regular season in 2011, UMES holds the longest conference winning streak at 14 straight league victories. UMES last fell in a MEAC match on September 7th, 2010 against Howard in Washington D.C. in straight sets. In addition, the Hawks have not lost a conference match at home since November 9th, 2006 when UMES was defeated by Morgan State in four sets. The Hawks have not been beaten by a MEAC opponent in the Hytche Athletic Center under Don Metil's tenure with UMES.

UMES MATCHES TO AIR ON WGOP
WGOP 540 AM and 100.7 FM returns as the flagship station of Hawks volleyball for its second season and will air all matches live on the radio this year. Dave Vatz returns for his third season with UMES and will provide play-by-play, with WGOP producers Suzy Rummel and Steve Pettit operating from the Pocomoke City studio. Fans can listen online on umeshawks.com.

2011 IN REVIEW
UMES had its best year in school history in 2011, earning its first-ever MEAC Championship and berth in the NCAA Tournament with a 24-7 record. After earning a share of the championship in the Bryant and Brown Invitationals, following up with being the outright champion of the UMES Hawk Invitational, the Maroon and Gray won all 12 matches in the conference regular season to win MEAC Northern Division for the fifth-consecutive year. After victories over North Carolina Central and Hampton in the first two rounds of the MEAC Tournament, the Hawks defeated Florida A&M in the championship for the title. UMES earned a berth in the NCAA Tournament, falling to 9-seed and eventual national champion UCLA in Los Angeles in the first round.