Volleyball Earns First Seed in ECAC Tournament

Photo by Nicole Williams

The Roadrunners women’s volleyball team has qualified as the number one seed in the Eastern College Athletic Conference Metro/Upstate Women’s Volleyball Tournament.

“It’s a good deal, we’ve been here before four times prior to this time but have not been able to come up with the championship,” said Ramapo’s 10th year head coach Robert Pichardo. “We’ve been seeded as high as two, but usually lose in the semifinals, so we go into this tournament headstrong and thinking of winning the whole thing.”

The Roadrunners come into the ECAC Tournament with a 25-9 record overall and finished 6-2 in the New Jersey Athletic Conference. They reached the semifinals in the NJAC tournament, defeating Montclair State University in the first round 3-2 (15-25, 25-18, 23-25, 25-18, 15-10), but lost to the 2014 NJAC champion Richard Stockton 3-1 (25-22, 22-25, 15-25, 18-25).

Seven time NJAC Rookie of the Week and 2014 NJAC Women’s Volleyball Rookie of the Year Larysa Iwaskiw leads the Roadrunners with 422 defensive digs and a single season record of 518 kills. She also leads the NJAC in kills per set with 4.84.

Junior captain Kaitlin Mac Iver has a team leading 964 assists. She has recorded 8.38 assists per set to go along with 55 aces, which is good for second on the Roadrunners. She also registered 33 kills of her own, 279 defensive digs (2.43 per set) and nine blocks this season.

Sophomore middle blocker Emily Guzman leads the Roadrunners with 29 solo blocks. She is second on the Roadrunners in total blocks and kills with 56 and 246 respectively. In addition, Guzman collected 0.48 blocks per game, 317.5 points, and 105 defensive digs.

Mac Iver said that the Roadrunners have been waiting all year for a chance to win the ECAC tournament.

“It means a lot for us especially because we are the number one seed,” said Mac Iver. “We worked really hard all year for this so we’re just really excited.”

Since the Roadrunners are the number one seed in the ECAC Tournament, they have a first round bye. They will take on the winner of the number four seeded Rutgers Newark and number five seed College of New Rochelle on Sunday at the host venue of Alfred State at 11 a.m.

Also on Sunday, the number two seeded Ithaca will play against the number three seeded Alfred State at 1:30 p.m. The winners of the two semifinal matches will play in the championship match Sunday at 4 p.m.

Pichardo does not think that the team’s preparation for the ECAC tournament will be any different from previous matches.

“We’ve been preparing the same way; obviously, going through the experience that we just had last week,” Pichardo said. “Learn from that and make sure we keep that in our charge.”