By: Christian Hince | September 27, 2021
The University at Albany Great Danes opened America East play Sunday with a loss at Binghamton in a game that went down to the wire. UAlbany fell to 4-11 (0-1 in conference), while the hosting Bearcats improved to 6-8 (2-0 in conference).
The Great Danes started on the right foot, scoring the first point with an Anissia Wong kill. While Binghamton tied it at 10 midway through the set, a five-point UAlbany run set the tone for a stretch. This was until the Bearcats hatched a five-point burst of their own to tie it at 23, shortly before winning the set 26-24.
UAlbany showed up fiercely in the second, opening up a 13-7 lead after one three-point run and two of four points each. While Binghamton didn’t give up, the Great Danes overpowered them to win 25-16 in the second.
The Bearcats led early in the third set, but before long they found themselves trailing UAlbany 9-8. The Great Danes didn’t look back, jumping out to a 21-13 lead with two five-point runs, soon winning the set 25-17.
Binghamton held the lead for much of the fourth, but a 7-1 UAlbany run put the Great Danes within one point before tying the score at 24. This momentum couldn’t hold out however. The Bearcats won 31-29, setting up a 2-2 tiebreaker.
Both teams earned scoring runs early in the fifth, but it was Binghamton who led for much of the set. After a three-point surge, UAlbany took back the lead at 14-13. Victory escaped the Great Danes though, as a 16-14 loss ended their day with defeat.
With all three deciding sets lost by just two points, UAlbany Head Coach Josh Pickard expressed his disappointment. “We had opportunities to finish the match and unfortunately weren’t able to capitalize,” said Pickard. “Great work by Binghamton and their fight in this match.”
The offense was led by Oren Abutbul with 15 kills, who was followed by Kamara Kelly and Regan Wright with 11 each. On the flip side, Charlotte Macken led the defense with 20 digs, distantly followed by Kelly with 13. Malea Stanton tallied a team-high 28 assists, and Anissia Wong led blockers with five total.
The Great Danes have a chance to rebound on October 3rd, when they play Stony Brook on their home court.