The St. John’s volleyball team (10-2) came in second place with a 3-1 record this past weekend at the Kaiser Classic. The tournament, which took place at Carnesecca Arena, saw the Red Storm match up against Idaho State, St. Francis, Fairleigh Dickinson and Bryant.
“Idaho State was a very athletic and solid team with good blocking,” said head coach Joanne Persico. “Bryant was scrappy too. We will learn from the video.”
Idaho State 3, St. John’s 1
The Red Storm came up short in the final match of the day, which decided who would become Kaiser Classic Champions. Idaho State defeated the Red Storm 3-1 (34-32, 20-25, 25-21, 25-14). The loss ended the Red Storm’s nine-game winning streak. Senior Milica Krstojevic had a new career-high of seven blocks; while sophomore Aleksandra Wachowicz tied her career-high of 21 kills, but led the team in attacking errors (10). Senior setter Sabina Piegza continued her season-long streak of recording 20 or more assists in every match.
In the first set, the score was tied 23 times and there were nine lead changes. The Red Storm had set point four times, but Idaho State came back each time to tie the score and eventually win, 34-32.
The Johnnies came back and won the second set, 25-20. Efforts from Wachowicz, who had seven kills, and strong blocking from Krstojevic helped the Red Storm a great deal.
Idaho State defeated the Red Storm in the third set, 25-20. The Johnnies got off to a quick start, but allowed the Bengals to go on a five-point run to take an 8-5 lead.
The Red Storm came back with a seven-point run to take the lead 17-14, but the Bengals once again went on a run of their own to lead the set 23-18 and eventually win 25-20.
In the fourth and final set of the match, St. John’s lost 25-14. Idaho State went on a quick 4-0 start and never looked back.
Despite the loss, coach Persico is still in high spirits.
“The game against Idaho State was a great test for us. The first set was good, but we got mentality tired. We will continue to work hard for points.”
Idaho State’s attacking percentage of .264 with 21 errors gave them an edge, which allowed them to win the match. St. John’s had 31 errors and an attacking percentage of .164, the second lowest of their season.
St. John’s 3, St. Francis 0
The Red Storm defeated St. Francis 3-0 (25-15, 25-16, 25-14) in their third match of the tournament. The Red Storm held the Terriers to a .010 attacking percentage and Krstojevic led the team with 11 attacks and finished the match with a career-high 12 kills, a .786 attacking percentage, two digs, and two blocks.
Sophomore Yana Vavdiyuk had a team-high four blocks.
St. John’s 3, Fairleigh Dickinson 0
In the first set, Fairleigh Dickinson tied the score three times and even took the lead twice. However, St. John’s broke a 10-10 tie with a 6-1 run and went on to win the set, along with the second and third.
They defeated the Knights 3-0 (25-20, 25-12, 25-16). Santos just missed her first career double double with 11 kills and nine digs.
St. John’s 3, Bryant 0
In the first match of the tournament, St. John’s swept Bryant 3-0 (25-13, 25-17, 25-17). The Red Storm allowed Bryant to lead only once during the entire match. Freshman Karin Palgutova and Milica Krstojevic had nine kills, four digs, and three blocks each. Senior Gabriela Petkova led the team with 14 digs.
The Red Storm will travel to Brooklyn, to play in the Blackbird Invitational on Sept. 14.