HAWKS FLY TO CALIFORNIA TO FACE UCLA FOR FIRST EVER NCAA TOURNAMENT MATCH
Saitaua Iosia returns to her home state of California to lead UMES against UCLA.

Saitaua Iosia returns to her home state of California to lead UMES against UCLA.

Dec. 1, 2011

UMES Game Notes - UMES @ UCLA, NCAA First Round

Tournament Central - UCLA, Live Video

Listen Live on the Hawks Radio Network!

The Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference champion Hawks will head to Los Angeles for their first ever NCAA Tournament match, taking on 9-seed UCLA in the first round. The match is set for December 2nd at 11:00 p.m. Eastern Time (8:00 p.m. PT). The winner will face the victor of Long Beach State and San Diego in the second round. This is the first time that UMES will play in California since 2003. The match will be shown live on uclabruins.com plus broadcast on radio on WGOP 540 AM.

UMES WINS 2011 MEAC CHAMPIONSHIP
With a five-set victory over Florida A&M, UMES won the MEAC Championship for the first time in school history on November 20th in Baltimore. In the final game with the score tied at seven, UMES went on a 5-0 run capped by three blocks to go up 12-7, leading to a 15-12 set win. Saitaua Iosia, named the Most Outstanding Performer in the tournament, scored the final kill, totaling 25 along with 11 digs for a double-double. Maline Vaitai also earned a double-double, notching 10 kills and 11 digs. Don Metil earned Most Outstanding Coach of the tournament.

UMES EARNS MEAC ROOKIE, COACH OF THE YEAR
The Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference announced that Saitaua Iosia was recognized as the conference Rookie of the Year, while Don Metil earned Coach of the Year. Iosia finished first in the MEAC in points and kills per set, with a .301 hitting percentage. Metil led the Hawks to a perfect conference record and fifth straight MEAC North title. Iosia was joined by Jessie Vicic on the All-MEAC First Team. Vicic led the conference this year with 10.58 assists per set and 1,195 assists overall. Kaveinga Lea'Aetoa earned All-MEAC Second Team, going top-five in the conference in hitting percentage at .296 and blocks with 86.

 

 

THREE HAWKS NAMED ALL-COBRA EAST REGION
Saitaua Iosia was named the COBRA Magazine East Region Player of the Year with Maline Vaitai joining Iosia on the All-East Region Team and Kaveinga Lea'Aetoa getting Honorable Mention All-East Region. Vaitai, a member of the COBRA All-Preseason Third Team, and Lea'Aetoa land on the All-East team for the second consecutive season.

BUZZ-"SA"
MEAC Rookie of the Year Saitaua Iosia, who has tallied double digit kills in all but one match this season, ranks first in the MEAC in points per set at 4.84, 24th in the country in that category, first in the MEAC and 36th in Division I in kills per set at 4.14, fourth in the conference and 29th in the nation in aces per set at 0.42 and fourth in hitting % at .297. She leads all conference freshmen in those categories. In 30 matches this year, Iosia has recorded 12 double-doubles.

IOSIA MEMBER OF 30-KILL CLUB
In UMES's five-set victory over Bryant during the Brown Invitational, Saitaua Iosia notched 30 kills, the highest number for a MEAC player in a single match this season, with just five errors for a hitting percentage of .424. Iosia has achieved the six highest kill totals for the Hawks this season, including 25 kills each against Florida A&M and CSU Bakersfield.

VICIC LEADS MEAC 30-ASSIST CLUB
First Team all-conference setter Jessie Vicic is atop the 30-assists club of the MEAC, getting above that mark in 26 matches. Her highest total came against Campbell in the High Point Invitational, notching 56 assists in five sets. She is first in the conference in assists per set at 10.67, totaling 1,067 in 100 sets, and is the only MEAC player that averages double digits in that category. She earned her 1,000th assist at home against Norfolk State.

211 ACES
UMES, has earned 211 aces this season to be fourth in Division I. The team has four players in the top-250 in aces per set. Saitaua Iosia is 29th in the NCAA with 0.39 aces a game, totaling 39. Zoe Bowens notched 12 aces in the MEAC Tournament to stand at 41 on the season, getting 0.37 a set for 62nd in the country. Maline Vaitai has 35 for 0.31 a set for 164th in Division I, while Jessie Vicic stands at 33 aces, 0.29 a game, to rank 202nd in Division I. While not in the top-250 in the nation, Rebecca Prado currently has 30 aces this year.

SCOUTING THE OPPONENT:
UCLA stands as the 9-seed in the NCAA Tournament after finishing with a 24-6 record and a second place finish in the Pac-12 at 17-5. With the seed, UCLA serves as one of the 16 campus sites that hosts the first two rounds. The Bruins are led by junior outside hitter Rachael Kidder, totaling 464 kills with 209 digs and 72 blocks. 6-5 junior outside hitter Tabi Love has 251 kills with 47 blocks, while sophomore middle blocker Mariana Aquino sports 83 blocks with 137 kills.

PRADO MEMBER OF THE 1,000-DIG CLUB
On October 14th against Hampton, Rebecca Prado earned her 1,000th dig of her volleyball career. This season, the senior has started at libero for UMES every match this season, compiling 351 digs for 3.11 a set. Prado has compiled 777 digs in a Hawks uniform, in addition to the 319 she had at Wagner College in 2008, to total 1,096 in her career. Prado is also tied for third in the MEAC with four 20-dig matches.

HAWKS FLYING HIGH ATOP THE MEAC
UMES leads the MEAC in five major categories: hitting percentage (.255), opponent's hitting percentage (.155), assists per set (11.58), kills per set (12.66) and blocks per set (2.26). The Hawks also stand at second in the MEAC and fourth in Division I in aces per set at 1.87.

MIGHTY IN THE MIDDLE
The Hawks, the top blocking team in the MEAC with 255.5 total blocks in 113 sets to average 2.26 per set, are led by two players in the top-four in blocks in the conference. Ndidi Ibe averages 0.98 blocks a set with 110 total, adding 170 kills for a conference-leading .326 hitting %. Kaveinga Lea'Aetoa is fourth in blocks per set with 0.86 and fifth in the MEAC in hitting % at .296, totaling 200 kills and 86 blocks.

PERFECT ROAD RECORD
The Hawks finished their road slate with an unblemished record over non-conference tournament hosts, defeating South Florida, Bryant, Brown and High Point, plus all six MEAC North opponents. UMES is the only MEAC team with a winning road record at 10-0.

UMES HAWK INVITATIONAL CHAMPIONS
The Maroon and Grey finished non-conference play in strong fashion with three victories at home over Alabama State, North Carolina Central and CSU Bakersfield to win the UMES Hawk Invitational with a combined set score of 9-1. Saitaua Iosia was named the invitational's MVP while Maline Vaitai earned a place on the All-Tournament Team.

VAITAI NAMED MEAC PRESEASON POY
Sophomore outside hitter Maline Vaitai was named MEAC Preseason Player of the Year by the conference in August. Last season she earned MEAC Rookie of the Year after leading the conference in kills with 407, kills per set at 3.45, points with 476.5 and points per set at 4.04. In addition, senior outside hitter Zoe Bowens was also named to the MEAC Preseason Team with 350 kills and 79 aces in 2010.

METIL EARNS 200TH WIN
Don Metil won his 100th match at UMES on September 30th with a shutout victory over Alabama State. He also earned his 200th victory as a head coach on November 18th after a five-set win over North Carolina Central. With the Hawks, Metil sports a 117-38 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 since earned over 200 victories including stops at Notre Dame (MD), Lees-McRae and Coppin State. Metil has also reached the NCAA Tournament in three different divisions.

UMES 3RD LONGEST ACTIVE HOME WINNING STREAK
Winning their last 24 matches in Princess Anne, the Hawks have the 3rd longest home winning streak in Division I. Their last loss in the Hytche Athletic Center came on Sept. 26, 2009 with a 3-0 defeat from Sacred Heart. In addition, this streak marks the longest in the MEAC. In their match against CSU Bakersfield on October 1st, UMES's 53-set winning streak at home ended.

Team Current Home Win Streak (as of 11/28)
1- Nebraska 36
2- Texas 28
3- UMES 24
4- Furman 15
5- Hawaii 14

UMES MATCHES TO AIR ON WGOP
WGOP 540 AM and 100.7 FM is now the flagship station of Hawks volleyball and will air all matches live on the radio this year. Dave Vatz returns for his second season with UMES and will provide play-by-play for each match. Fans can listen online on umeshawks.com.

UMES WINS BROWN INVITATIONAL CO-CHAMPIONSHIP
For the second straight weekend, the Hawks were co-champions in a tournament in Rhode Island, taking a share of the title of the Brown Invitational with Brown after going 2-1. UMES defeated Bryant in a rematch and tournament host Brown in five sets while falling to Fordham 3-1. Saitaua Iosia and Kaveinga Lea'Aetoa were named to the All-Tournament Team.

UMES NAMED BRYANT INVITATIONAL CO-CHAMPION
The Hawks were named co-champion of the Bryant Invitational, going 2-1 over two days, sharing the title with defeated opponent Harvard. UMES came back from falling in the first set to defeat Bryant 3-1 to open on Friday. After a defeat against Holy Cross 3-0, the Hawks earned their first shutout victory of the season over the Crimson 3-0. Outside hitters Saitaua Iosia and Maline Vaitai earned a place on the All-Tournament Team.

VAITAI NAMED COBRA ALL-PRESEASON THIRD TEAM
In their annual August preseason issue, COBRA Magazine named Maline Vaitai to the All-Preseason Third Team, being the only MEAC player to receive this honor. Last season, Vaitai along with Zoe Bowens and Samantha Chukwura received All-National Honorable Mention as well as All-East Region Team.