Nov. 15, 2009

Courtesy of Salisbury Athletics

The Salisbury University volleyball team saw the program's deepest run into the NCAA tournament come to a close Saturday, falling to Christopher Newport University 3-2 at New York University.

Salisbury won the first two games before seeing the Captains (36-6) climb back into the match and take the final three sets to advance to the national quarterfinals next weekend.

The 23-25, 20-25, 25-22, 25-13, 15-6 third-round loss marks the farthest a Salisbury volleyball team has ever ventured into the NCAA tournament, having advanced to the second round last season.

The Sea Gulls (32-5) were led in the match by freshman middle hitter Chelsea Glowacki (Poolesville, Md.), who finished with 10 kills and three blocks. Senior middle hitter Nicole Massarelli (Clarksville, Md.) led all players with four blocks to go with eight kills.

Salisbury got double-digit dig totals from four players led by junior outside hitter Lexy Fitzkee (Fallston, Md.), who finished with a career-high 26; senior libero Gabby Long (Bel Air, Md.) had 24, junior outside hitter Melissa Stansbury (Eldersburg, Md.) had 17 and senior outside hitter Rachel Downes (Salisbury, Md.) finished with 11 to go with nine kills in the match.

Freshman setter Carley Todd (Centerport, N.Y.) finished with a 16 assists to go with five kills as sophomore Lindsey Saltzman (Penfield, N.Y.) added 15 assists.

For their outstanding efforts during the regional tournament, Long and Glowacki were named to the All-Tournament team. Long contributed 81 digs to go with nine assists in the three matches while Glowacki was good for 29 kills and a .271 hitting percentage.  

Saturday's loss brings to an end the careers of three seniors that have meant a great deal to the Salisbury program. Massarelli, Downes and Long represent two school records, two of just eight 1,000-kill careers in program history and a four-year record of 118-31. The trio has been a part of all three of Salisbury's NCAA tournament victories.