UMES RETURNS TO MEAC TOURNAMENT SEEKING 2ND STRAIGHT CONFERENCE TITLE
Saitaua Iosia was the MEAC Tournament Most Outstanding Player last season.

Saitaua Iosia was the MEAC Tournament Most Outstanding Player last season.

Nov. 15, 2012

UMES Game Notes - MEAC Tournament

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BALTIMORE - The Hawks return to Coppin State seeking a second straight conference title, serving as the 1-seed from the Northern Division in the MEAC Tournament. UMES will play MEAC South 4-seed Bethune-Cookman on Friday at 1 p.m. at the Physical Education Complex. The winner of that match will face the winner of South Carolina State-Hampton on Saturday at noon. The MEAC Championship will be on Sunday at noon.

UMES comes in with an 11-1 conference record and 25-5 overall standing, while Bethune-Cookman is 5-5 in the MEAC and 5-27 this season. South Carolina State is the MEAC South 2-seed at 6-4 in the league and 9-14 overall, and Hampton is the MEAC North 3-seed at 9-3 in-conference and 18-13 overall.

HAWKS DEFEAT NSU FOR SIXTH MEAC NORTH TITLE
Coming back from down two sets and surviving two match points, UMES defeated Norfolk State on the road in five to secure its sixth straight MEAC Northern Division title and lock up a 1-seed in the MEAC Tournament.

Saitaua Iosia led the Hawks with a season-high 24 kills, including five in the final set, adding 13 digs for a double double. Maline Vaitai earned 16 kills with six digs and three blocks.

IBE AND VICIC EARN FIRST TEAM ALL-MEAC HONORS
Middle blocker Ndidi Ibe and setter Jessie Vicic were recognized as First Team All-MEAC honorees on Thursday. Ibe earns her first all-conference selection in her senior season after becoming the first MEAC player this season to earn triple digit kills and blocks. Vicic is named the First Team All-MEAC setter for the second season in a row after earning 1,206 assists in 2012, the most in the conference.

 

 

VAITAI JOINS THE 1,000-KILL CLUB
With 15 kills in the final home match against Howard on October 26th, Maline Vaitai became a member of the 1,000-kill club with her 14th kill in the third set. The 2010 MEAC Rookie of the Year had 407 kills as a freshman and 317 in 2011, standing with a team-high 323 this year for 1,047 in her career. She is the third member of the UMES 1,000-kill club in the 25-point era, joining Whitney Johnson (1,225) and Caylin Woodward (1,132).

VICIC - UMES'S TOP ALL-TIME SETTER
Jessie Vicic, a All-MEAC Preseason Team member, is UMES's all-time leader in assists, standing with 2,415 in her collegiate career. She earned the top mark with her eighth assist in the third set vs. Howard on October 26th, finishing with 41 in the match. This season, Vicic has a MEAC-best 1,206 assists after getting 1,209 in 2011. Now second on the UMES all-time assists list is Christina Estebané, who earned 2,233 assists from 2007-08.

Ndidi Ibe - TOP UMES BLOCKER OF ALL-TIME
With six blocks against Norfolk State on October 14, Ndidi Ibe passed Kaveinga Lea'Aetoa to become the all-time blocks leader in UMES history. With her second block in the first set, Ibe earned block #205 in her UMES career to earn the all-time mark. She has 340 blocks in her collegiate career, including 234 with UMES and 106 with Navy.

HAWKS SECOND IN D-I IN ACES, ACES PER SET
With 232 aces in 113 sets, the Hawks lead the MEAC and stand second in D-I in aces per set, averaging 2.05 aces per game. Saitaua Iosia is the MEAC leader with 0.70 aces per set, totaling 52 in 74 games, while Kaveinga Lea'Aetoa is third 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 .254 hitting percentage, almost 30 percentage points above second place Florida A&M at .227. Kaveinga Lea'Aetoa is second in the MEAC by hitting .332, with Ndidi Ibe is at third with .326. Two other UMES players are in the top-eight: Saitaua Iosia is sixth at .277 and at eighth is Victoria Williams at .253.

...AND THE TOP DEFENSIVE TEAM IN THE LEAGUE
The Hawks have allowed opponents to hit just .173, over 20 percentage points ahead of second place Coppin State at .194. UMES averages 1.97 blocks per set, second in the MEAC, led by Ndidi Ibe's 1.07 per set, the second-best mark in the conference. UMES leads the conference in total blocks with 223.

SCOUTING THE (POSSIBLE) OPPONENTS:
After starting 3-1 in MEAC play, Bethune-Cookman has fallen in nine of its last 11 matches coming into Friday. Second Team All-MEAC senior outside hitter Krysta Gardner leads the Wildcats with 364 kills and 47 aces, adding 259 digs. The top freshman on the team 6-2 outside hitter Delicia Pierre, has 184 kills and 53 blocks.

South Carolina State, the MEAC champion in 2011, snapped a three-match winning streak with a loss to North Carolina A&T on Sunday. Desire Waller was named the MEAC Player of the Year after tallying 363 kills, 22 aces and 165 digs. Alabama State transfer Maya Bell is second on the Bulldogs in kills with 165 and is first with 24 aces.

Hampton ended UMES's 23-match conference winning streak on Sunday and has won its last five matches into the weekend. The Pirates sport two all-conference players: sophomore outside hitter Krista Kraskura was named First Team with a squad-best 373 kills and 323 digs, and junior setter Bibiany Fonseca has 873 assists with 30 aces, 74 kills and 142 digs.

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 and Jessie Vicic set 62 assists in UMES's opening match.

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 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 142-44 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.

IOSIA IS BACK AND SWINGING
After missing some time due to injury, Saitaua Iosia has returned and been a force for UMES, earning double digit kills in ten of her last 11 matches. The MEAC Preseason Player of the Year and four-time conference Player of the Week has a total of 172 kills, 28 aces and 89 digs in her last 11 matches, totaling 316 kills with a .277 hitting percentage in 20 matches, adding 52 aces and 201 digs this season.

UMES - D-I LONGEST ACTIVE HOME WINNING STREAK
Winning their last 30 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 Hawks have played five matches at home this season to keep the streak alive. In addition, the Hawks have not lost a home MEAC match since 2006, winning all 32 conference matches since 2007.

UMES MATCHES TO AIR ON WGOP
WGOP 540 AM 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.