The UAlbany Great Danes were outmatched in a four set loss Sunday against a dominant UMBC Retrievers team. UAlbany fell to 12-14 overall and 7-4 in the America East, and the conference tournament hosts moved to 16-11 overall and 11-0 in the league. UMBC is one win away from their first ever perfect regular season in the conference.
“We started flat and gave a good team too much of a lead,” said coach Josh Pickard. Pickard still found positivity in the performance however, saying, “I’m happy with how the team responded after making some switches for the third set.”
The Danes tallied the first point with an Oren Abutbul and Lilou Stegeman block which led to a 4-1 advantage, however the Retrievers scored eight of the next ten points to go up 9-6. UAlbany stayed within striking distance for the next couple exchanges, but a four-point UMBC run put them up 17-11. The home team carried this advantage to a 25-19 first set win.
Scoring the first point again in the second, the Great Danes were overrun again when the Retrievers took a 4-2 lead which they never gave up. UMBC led by as many as nine in a set they comfortably won 25-17.
In the third, UAlbany opened an early 4-2 lead which they built to a later 11-7 advantage. The Retrievers flipped the tables with a surge that put them up 16-12, but a three point run, ended by a block from Abutbul and Danielle Tedesco, left them down by one. The Danes soon took the lead with a Regan Wright service ace, and a fierce battle over the last few points ended with them winning 25-23.
UAlbany scored first in the fourth as well, however the Retrievers carried some early momentum to an 11-7 lead of their own. The Danes scored seven of the next nine though, taking the lead 14-13. They couldn’t keep this advantage however, finding themselves down late 22-19, and finding themselves losing the set and the match after a 25-22 defeat.
The offense was fronted by Tedesco and Grace Cozad who collected 12 kills each, while the defense was led by Charlotte Macken with 13 digs. Macken also tallied 34 receptions.
Malea Stanton was the squad’s prime setter as usual, collecting 35 assists, and Anissia Wong achieved a team-high in blocks with six.
The Great Danes will conclude their regular season Friday, coming home for senior night against Binghamton.