DANBURY, Conn. - Second-seeded Plymouth State University advanced to the championship match of the Little East Conference Volleyball Tournament Saturday afternoon with a 3-0 victory (30-11, 30-15, 30-12) over third-seeded University of Southern Maine.
The Panthers will play in the title match Sunday at 12 noon against the winner of Saturday's second semifinal, either top-seeded and host Western Connecticut State University or fourth-seeded Rhode Island College.
Saturday's victory extends PSU's school-record for wins in a season as the Panthers improve to 28-6 overall while Southern Maine drops to 19-12. Plymouth State advances to the LEC Championship for the first time since 1996 when it defeated Western Connecticut in the semifinals before losing to Eastern Connecticut in the title match.
Seniors Becky Landry (Nashua, N.H.) and Carin LaValley (Northfield, N.H.) led the Panthers in the semifinal win over Southern Maine, registering 13 kills apiece. Landry had only one attack error in 26 attempts and LaValley recorded only three errors in 24 attempts. Sophomores Kelly Landry (Nashua, N.H.) and Becky Ciulla (Chelmsford, Mass.) also contributed nine and six kills, respectively.
LaValley and senior Sonia Trudell (Somersworth, N.H.) led the Panther defensive effort with 11 digs apiece, and Kelly Landry and sophomore Amanda Bagwell (Riverside, R.I.) chipped in with 10 digs each. Bagwell also recorded 30 assists in the match.
In earlier matches this season, PSU swept Rhode Island College in three games on Oct. 25 but lost to Western Connecticut in five games (15-9 in the decisive fifth game) on Sept. 20.
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