PROVIDENCE, R.I. – Franklin & Marshall's volleyball team fell by a 3-0 (25-20, 28-26, 25-22) tally in a hard-fought contest against SUNY New Paltz in the First Round of the NCAA Tournament on Friday evening.
The Diplomats ended the year with a 23-8 overall record while the Hawks will continue to tomorrow's Second Round with a 27-8 mark.
Three-straight kills from Allison Franke helped F&M to a 4-3 lead to start the match. New Paltz responded with a run to take back the lead, but back-to-back kills from Grace Maggiore evened the contest at 15-15. A Barbara Kapustin kill gave the Diplomats the 19-18 edge, but the Hawks finished out the first set with a 7-1 run to take the frame.
F&M came out with the momentum in the second set as a kill from Grace Polisano kept the lead at 11-7 in the Diplomats' favor. The Hawks were able to counter to take the lead at 22-20, but F&M battled back with a Polisano kill evening the set at 24-24. A Casey Morrow kill gave the Diplomats a set point at 26-25, but New Paltz was able to win the second frame by a 28-26 tally.
A Franke kill kept F&M in the final set at 6-6. Kapustin notched a kill to spark a 4-0 run that capped off with a Carly Ostrowski ace to help the Diplomats to a 12-11 lead. Back-to-back kills from Franke increased the deficit to four at 19-15, but the Hawks took back the momentum to take the match with a 25-22 score.
Kapustin led the offense with 15 kills, followed by Franke with 12. Maggiore tallied a double-double of 34 assists and 11 digs.
Tonight's loss ends F&M's 2018-19 campaign, which saw the squad's first NCAA appearance since 2014 and 11th-straight Centennial Conference (CC) playoff berth.