The volleyball team stormed through its weekend slate, dropping only one set in three games en route to being crowned
champions at the 2012 CCSU Invitational in New Britain, Conn.
Sophomore outside hitter Aleksandra Wachowicz was named Tournament MVP as she led the Red Storm in kills in all three
matches. She set a new career-high with 21 kills in the Johnnies’ first match against Central Connecticut State.
“It was one of her best weekends,” said St. John’s head coach Joanne Persico. “She worked hard in the weight room with
Coach Basil. She’s studied the game and had a good rhythm out there.”
Senior setter Sabina Piegza and freshman outside hitter Karin Palgutova also received All-Tournament honors. Piegza had a season high 41 assists against Central Connecticut State in the match on Friday while Palgutova added 34 kills on a team
best .469 attacking percentage.
With a 7-1 record, the Red Storm are off to a much better start than last year; a season which saw the Johnnies post an unimpressive 10-21 record.
“The core players coming back gave a lot of experience and the recruiting class filled areas we [(were]) focused on — – serving, receiving, and attacking the ball more consistently. I think it’s been really good so far,” said head coach Joanne Persico.
St. John’s 3, Holy Cross 0
Saturday concluded the three-match tournament with the Red Storm sweeping Holy Cross, 3-0 (25-19, 25-7, 25-22).
There were seven tied scores and four lead changes in the first set. The team had a .300 attacking percentage, keeping Holy Cross to only a .060 attacking percentage (25-19).
The Red Storm began the second set with a 6-0 lead and continued to dominate, closing the frame out in just eight minutes.
Wachowicz picked up her team-leading 13 kills and senior Gabriela Petkova had a team-high 18 digs.
St. John’s 3, Brown 0
In the first match on Saturday, the Red Storm swept Brown 3-0 (25-18, 25-16, 25-22). helped by 38 assists from Piegza.
After running out to a seven-point lead in the first set, Persico was forced to call a timeout after four straight Brown points cut the lead to 17-14. The Johnnies responded with an 8-4 run to close out the set.
In the final set of the match, there were nine ties and five lead changes, but the Red Storm overcame a 17-13 deficit and ended the set with a 6-2 run to take the frame, 25-20.
Both Petkova and freshman Shawna-Lei Santos picked up double-digit digs, Petkova with 12 and Santos with 11. Santos also had a season-high four service aces. Wachowicz had a team-high 18 kills while her teammates senior Milica Krstojevic and Palgutova had 10 kills each.
St. John’s 3, CCSU 1
Petkova moved into fourth place in St. John’s all-time libero assists list in the first match of the tournament, a 3-1 win (25-19, 25-8, 21-25, 25-20) In the first match of the tournament, the volleyball team defeated hosts CCSU 3-1 (25-19, 25-8, 21-25, 25-20).
The Red Storm will return to Carnesecca Arena to host Bryant, Fairleigh Dickinson, Idaho State, and St. Francis in the annual Kaiser Classic Sept. 7 and Sept. 8.