By: Matt Duke
Leah Simmons reached 1,000 career kills this past weekend as the Griffs split their weekend series.
On Saturday, Canisius lost a five-set match to Siena at the Koessler Athletic Center. They would take the first set 25-22, but followed that up with a loss, 23-25. They turned things around, winning the fourth set, 25-16. Siena forced a fifth set by taking the fourth set, 23-25. Siena rounded out the match by winning the fifth and final set, 13-15. Hannah Nelson put up 14 blocks and four aces for Canisius. Leah Simmons added 10 kills for the Griffs, as well as eight blocks.
Injuries have impacted the team somewhat this year.
“It’s affected my ability to have the subs that I planned at the ability of the beginning of the year and it changed our game plan a little bit,” head coach Lenika Vazquez said on the matter. “But I feel we have the depth in our team to still do some good things.”
The Griffs look to get past these bumps in the road and continue to succeed in MAAC play.
Sunday saw a different outcome, as Leah Simmons reached 1,000 career kills en route to a five-set victory over the Marist Red Foxes. The Griffs stole set one from the foxes, 25-19. They would drop the next two, however, 21-25 and 22-25 respectively. It would be Canisius who forced a fifth set on Sunday, as they took set four 25-18.
Finally, the Blue and Gold edged out Marist with a 15-11 victory in the final frame. Simmons had 15 kills in the match, which put her above the 1,000 kill threshold. She now sits at 1,004 career kills. Ella Loussia added 13 kills in the win, and Camila Vazquez notched 12 kills.
“I think it’s amazing when they hit milestones like that,” Vazquez said of Simmons hitting 1,000 kills. “She put a lot of time in the gym, working on different positions. Not just her hitting that milestone, but her ability to play multiple positions, has been huge for this program.”
Simmons has been a major part in the Griffs’ offensive attack this year, as she leads the team with 313 kills on the year.
The Griffs round out their regular season with a final homestand this weekend. On Saturday, they host the Fairfield Stags at 1 p.m. at the Koessler Athletic Center. They play again at KAC on Sunday at 1 p.m., when they take on the visiting Quinnipiac Bobcats.
Canisius is currently in fourth in the MAAC standings with a 10-6 record, with playoffs starting next Friday and continue into next Sunday.