Volleyball Gives One Away

Lesli Akeo had 25 digs, including several sprawling efforts to extend points

Sept. 25, 2011

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Siena and Fairfield staged another memorable five-set volleyball match Sunday at the ARC. The Saints hope to forget this one as quickly as possible. Fairfield stormed back from a 2-0 deficit to win the final three sets (22-25, 21-25, 25-23, 25-8 and 15-10), putting Siena in an early hole in the MAAC standings.

The Saints played some of their best volleyball of the season in winning the first two sets, and some of their worst in losing the final three.

Siena won the first set 25-22 and the second 25-21, taking a 2-0 lead to the lockerroom by limiting mistakes and making key plays at the right time. The match almost ended in the third set, but Fairfield eked out a 25-23 win to turn the momentum. The Stags then posted a dominating 25-8 victory in the lopsided fourth set, staggering Siena, and setting up a decisive fifth set.

In the fifth frame, Fairfield jumped out to a 10-5 lead and held off a mild Siena rally to complete the improbable comeback, 15-10.

Freshman Camille Coffey had 18 kills and 15 digs to lead Fairfield. Brianna Dixion also had 18 kills, and Lauren Balmert led five Stags in double-figure digs with 22. Fairfield racked up an astounding 96 digs, compared to just 69 for Siena. Libero Lesli Akeo had 25 of those digs for the Saints.

Taylor Akana had 15 kills and 10 digs, but she also posted 68 attacks. Freshman Jacquiline Skeen played well at the net, posting 10 kills and eight blocks. Middle blocker Colleen Ahearn added 11 kills and a .310 attack percentage. Siena served much better than it did Saturday, tallying seven aces and just four errors in the five sets. Arielle Smith had two of the aces, and was a key factor off the bench.

The Saints have won just one of their first four MAAC matches adding critical importance to Thursday night's home date with Marist.