Flanagan, Norklun lead Panthers to wins over Sage, Colby-Sawyer
PLATTSBURGH, N.Y. – Freshman Emilee Flanagan (Milton, N.H.) pounded down 13 kills in her collegiate debut and junior Carabeth Norklun (Goffstown, N.H.) added 15 kills and hit .520 on the night to lead the Plymouth State University women's volleyball team to a pair of 3-0 wins during day one of the Best Western Plus-Ground Round Cardinal Classic at Memorial Hall on the campus of Plattsburgh State on Friday night.
Flanagan hit a sparkling .455 in her first career match, leading the Panthers with 13 kills as PSU swept Sage, 3-0, in the opener. Norklun dropped eight kills and hit .538 to help Plymouth State dispatch of Colby-Sawyer by the same score in the nightcap.
PSU begins the season 2-0 for the second straight year. Colby-Sawyer heads into day two of the tournament with a 1-1 mark, while Sage went 0-2 on the night.
Plymouth State 3, Sage 0
Plymouth State 3, Colby-Sawyer 0
Plymouth State (2-0)
How it Happened (Sage):
- The two teams traded small leads through the first set until a kill from Norklun sparked a 7-1 run, giving PSU a 15-8 advantage.
- Sage rallied to tie the score at 17-17 and force a Plymouth State timeout, but Flanagan followed with a kill and senior Alisha Flanagan (Milton, N.H.) served six straight points, including three aces, to build a 24-17. Moments later Norklun's kill gave PSU a 25-19 win.
- The Panthers jumped out to a 9-3 lead in set two behind strong serving from sophomore Brooke Beaudet (Gilford, N.H.).
- Sage rallied again to pull within 13-10, but Plymouth State responded with a 12-4 surge to cruise to a 25-14 win.
- The Gators took an 11-6 lead in the early stages of the third set, before A. Flanagan went on another long service run to push the Panthers in front, 14-11.
- Sage ripped off three straight points with the score tied at 19-all, and later took a 24-21 lead, but a Norklun kill gave Plymouth State the ball back and A. Flanagan completed the comeback with four points to complete the sweep, 26-24.
Inside the Numbers (Sage):
- In their first-ever match as teammates, the Flanagan sisters were dominant with Emilee smashing 13 kills and Alisha pacing the team with eight digs and seven aces.
- Norklun added seven kills while hitting an even .500, and senior Lex Bowers (Port St. Lucie, Fla.) chipped in with six kills and six digs.
- Beaudet added eight digs and a pair of aces as sophomore Alexa Price (Moultonborough, N.H.) dished out 21 assists.
- PSU hit .284 while limiting the Gators to a .100 attack percentage. The Panthers notched 16 kills and hit .500 in the second set alone, and finished the match with 42 kills as a team.
How it Happened (Colby-Sawyer):
- The Panthers got out to a good start in set one and a Price kill gave PSU a 13-5 lead to force a Colby-Sawyer timeout.
- Norklun found the floor to push the advantage to double digits, 22-12, and Price wrapped up the 25-15 victory with an ace.
- Plymouth State played with a lead throughout the second set, going up 16-6 after a kill from junior Francie Shaffer (Frederick, Colo.). She added another winner to make it 22-11, before the Chargers used a late run to cut the margin to 24-18.
- Shaffer's seventh kill of the set wrapped up the 25-18 win.
- PSU held a slight advantage through the middle stages of the third set, but Colby-Sawyer rallied to tie the score at 19-19.
- E. Flanagan put the ball away to break a 20-20 deadlock and spark a 3-0 spurt. The Chargers would cut the deficit to 23-22, but Shaffer answered with a kill and a CSC error gave the Panthers the sweep, 25-22.
Inside the Numbers (Colby-Sawyer):
- Shaffer led the Panthers with 12 kills, while Bowers chipped in with nine kills and seven digs.
- Norklun added eight kills against just one error (.538), while Price handed out 31 assists and led the team with 10 digs.
- Plymouth State limited the Chargers' offense to a .064 attack percentage, while hitting .222 themselves.
- The Panthers have enjoyed competing at Plattsburgh State – improving to 7-3 in the season-opening tournament over the last three seasons.
Straight From the Coach's Mouth:
"We were firing on all cylinders tonight and had great performances from multiple players," said head coach Joan Forge. "It was a strong start that hopefully sets the tone for the rest of the season."
- The Panthers square off against Hartwick (1:00 p.m.) and host Plattsburgh State (3:00 p.m.) tomorrow (Aug. 31) to close out the weekend.
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