November 3, 2012



Quincy, Mass.-Junior outside hitter Amanda Cabral (Riverside, RI) led Rhode Island College with 13 kills and seven digs as the Anchorwomen fell to UMass Boston, 3-0, in the semifinals of the 2012 Little East Conference Women's Volleyball Tournament played at Quincy High School on Saturday afternoon. 


Top-seeded UMass Boston (16-11) advances to the championship game, while fifth-seeded Rhode Island College closes out the 2012 campaign with a record 14-16.



 Junior Amanda Cabral


 "I am extremely proud of our ladies," Head Coach Elysce Tackmann said afterwards. "They were resilient all year long and have improved tremendously."


The Anchorwomen nearly stole the momentum early in the match after a closely contested first set.  However, the Beacons managed to hold off the visitors, 25-23, in that opening frame to jump out to an early, 1-0, advantage. UMass Boston took over from there, knocking off RIC by nine (25-16) in the second stanza and by 13 (25-12) in the third set en route to the victory.


Senior middle hitter Shannon Thompson (Moorpark, CA) led the Beacons with 12 kills and four digs, while junior outside hitter Amber Clemons (Simi Valley, CA) also added double-digit kills with 11. Junior outside hitter Corrine Porter (Huntington Beach, CA) posted a team-high eight digs to go along with five kills, while freshman setter Emma Rocha (Boynton Beach, FL) tallied 23 assists and five digs in the win.


Aside from Cabralís standout performance, the Anchorwomen were led by senior setter Jessica Ho (Providence, RI) and her 28 assists. Senior outside hitter Breanna Boyer (West Greenwich, RI) chipped in with seven kills and five digs, while freshman outside hitter Lauren Palazzini (Woonsocket, RI) registered six kills. Freshman libero Jasmyn Starr (Gilford, NH) finished with a team-high eight digs.


With Saturdayís loss, Boyer closes out her distinguished career at Rhode Island College with 1,458 kills, while Ho concludes her phenomenal career with 3,077 assists. Both are the all-time leaders in RIC women's volleyball history.


 "Breanna and Jess have been leaders on and off the court," Tackmann said. "They have laid a great foundation for our program going forward."


In the opening frame, UMass and Rhode Island exchanged points, with neither team really gaining any type of momentum. In total there were eight lead changes in the first set. The two teams were also tied on the scoreboard an additional 15 times. It was not until a 7-0 run late in the set that UMass was able to take control of the contest.  With set point on the scoreboard for UMB, Rhode Island made one last push and managed to make it just a one-point game. However with a kill from Clemons the Beacons were able to secure the victory to take a 1-0 lead overall. 


In the second set UMass once again had to overcome a hungry RIC squad, but with another run, this time coming midway through the set the Beacons were able to jump out to a comfortable lead. The Beacons limited any rallies and used consistent sets from both Pollock and Rocha to keep the Anchorwomen defense guessing. UMass closed out the second set with an ace from Porter.


The third set was the Beacons best, as they scored 12 kills on 20 attempts, without surrendering an error. UMass held the Anchorwomen to single-digits, while they tallied a combined 21 points. Rhode Island broke into double-figures on a kill by Cabral. UMass would seal the win on a RIC hitting error.


 Tomorrow's appearance in the conference tournament finals will mark the fifth straight for the Beacons as they look to earn their fourth consecutive league title.


Individually, UMB had six players hit .360 or better in the match. UMB hit a combined .365 scoring 42 kills on 85 attempts, while RIC hit .205.