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Saint Peter’s snaps Canisius volleyball’s winning streak

CANISIUS COLLEGE ATHLETICS

Carly Shifflet
BUFFALO, N.Y. -- Despite junior Leah Simmons posting 12 kills at a .306 hitting percentage and junior Cassidy Ceriani recording her seventh double-double of the season, the Canisius volleyball team fell to Saint Peter's in a 3-1 loss Sunday afternoon in MAAC volleyball action.
 
The Golden Griffins, who saw their winning streak end at four matches, won the first set by a score of 25-16, before falling 25-17, 25-22, and 25-15.
 
With the win, the Peacocks improved to 6-18 overall and 3-7 in MAAC play. For the Griffs, the loss dropped them to 9-10 overall, holding a 7-3 record in conference matches.
 
In addition to 12 kills, Simmons also registered three digs and a block assist. Two other Griffs finished with double-digit kills as senior Sara Wesley and freshman Camila Vazquez both had 10. Wesley added three digs and three block assists, while Vazquez got up for a trio of solo blocks. Fellow freshman Melina Woods maintained her solid play from yesterday, tallying seven kills, four digs, three block assists and two service aces.
 
Ceriani achieved her double-double with 39 assists and 17 digs, chipping on three kills. Senior libero Sofia Lopez Acosta once again led the Griffs in digs, recording 23 to go with four assists and one kill.  Junior Carly Shifflet and freshman Ashley Kekeisen both set career-highs in digs as well with Shifflet recording 12 digs and Kekeisen registering 16. 
 
The Griffs struck first in the opening set and never surrendered the lead. The team hit at a .300 percentage thanks to 14 assists from Ceriani on the way to a 25-16 victory. In the second set, Canisius started out strong again with a 4-0 opening but Saint Peter's fired back with a 10-0 run that gave the Peacocks their first lead of the match. The Blue and Gold never recovered and lost the frame, 25-17, as Saint Peter's finished the set hitting at .341.
 
The third set saw the two squads even it up several times before Saint Peter's used a 4-0 run to break a 17-17 stalemate. Despite the Griffs pushing back at the set-point, the Peacocks took control of the match with the 25-22 win. In what turned out to be the final set, the fourth frame had Saint Peter's take the lead early at 3-2 and never look back. Cruising the rest of the set, the Peacocks won 25-15 to seal their third conference win of the season.
 
Saint Peter's was led by Karen Ramiu and Alanis Alvarado, who both recorded double-doubles. Ramiu had a match-high 19 kills along with 13 digs while Alvarado pounded down 14 kills and added 22 digs. Karla Seda paced the Peacocks with 23 digs, tying Lopez Acosta for the match-high.
 
Head Coach Lenika Vazquez's Postgame Comments
"Much respect to Saint Peter's today. They definitely played to win."
 
Game Notes
• Sunday's contest was the 47th meeting between Canisius and Saint Peter's. The Griffs now hold a 33-14 advantage all-time in the series.
• The Griffs had previously beat the Peacocks in 17-straight matches.
• Ceriani has recorded 30-or-more assists in each of the Griffs' last eight matches.
• This is Ceriani's first double-double since Canisius' win Sept. 30 at Manhattan.
• Sunday saw Shifflet reach double-digit digs for the first time in her career, while Kekeisen did it for the sixth time this season.
• Lopez Acosta recorded 20-or-more digs for the 11th time this season.
• Vazquez's three solo blocks are the first time a Griff has recorded multiple solo blocks since Woods did it at Siena Sept. 16.
• Freshman Callie Chamulak made her collegiate debut for the Griffs, as the Grand Blanc, Mich. native entered the match during the first set.
 
Up Next
Canisius returns to Western New York to close out its road swing at longtime rival Niagara on Oct. 18. The Battle of the Bridge contest is set for 6 p.m. and will mark the 100th meeting between the two programs.