Dec. 3, 1996
Volleyball Ends Season on Strong Note
Overall Record: 18-17; BIG EAST 5-6
Head Coach: Karen Mendes
Captain: Becky Loftus
Under first year head coach Karen Mendes, the Lady Friars won their last three BIG EAST games of the season to finish with an overall record of 18-17. In the BIG EAST, PC finished with a 5-6 tally coming just shy of qualifying for the BIG EAST Championship.
Led by two-time All-BIG EAST athlete Becky Loftus, the Glens Falls, NY native finished her career as one of the top five hitters in the history of the program. She tallied a team high 405 kills from 962 attempts. She earned BIG EAST Player of the Week on November 11 as she helped PC erase a 2-0 deficit to upset Villanova 3-2. She had 30 kills and only three errors for a .491 hitting percentage and also tallied 29 digs.
Loftus also was a role model in the classroom as she garnered GTE-CoSIDA District I Academic All-America honors for the second consecutive year.
Fellow senior Sarah Parsons tallied 150 kills and 70 digs while coming off the bench for the Lady Friars. Senior Carol Lukasic tore a ligament in her knee during preseason and missed the entire 35-game season.
Sophomore Sherryl Jones and junior Heidi Brady added power to the young lineup. Jones, a two-sport athlete who also excels in ice hockey at Providence, tallied the most attempts on the squad (1,098) while making 335 kills at the net. She collected 15 or more kills on seven occasions including a career high of 29 kills in a BIG EAST win over Villanova. Defensively, she was third on the team with 40 blocks. Brady was a solid middle blocker as she led the squad with 112 blocks including 73 solo stops. Brady was one of only four players who saw action in every game.
Sophomores Melissa Crotti and Laura Ramig saw spot action throughout the season. Crotti was coming off shoulder surgery in the summer and played in 15 matches. A middle blocker, she tallied 22 kills and 22 blocks. Ramig saw action on defense as she collected seven digs.
Rookie Rachel Doxtater earned starting duties immediately for the Lady Friars. In her first collegiate game vs Middle Tennessee State, she posted 12 kills and nine digs for the Lady Friars. That was one of six games Doxtater tallied double-digit kills throughout the season. She earned BIG EAST Rookie of the Week honors on October 22 as she helped Providence to a 3-1 win over Boston College. In the game, Doxtater tallied a season high of 13 kills and recorded no hitting errors on 24 attempts. She also chipped in with 11 digs, two service aces and a block assists.
Adding to the strong freshman class was setter Colleen Lee. A starter who played in all 35 matches, Lee stepped into the setter duties midway through the season in a 3-2 loss to North Carolina on October 4. She later posted a season high of 63 assists against Syracuse and 62 against Villanova. Her season totals were impressive as she finished with 665 assists , 286 digs, 25 blocks, 138 kills and a team best of 35 serving aces.
Rookies Michelle Galliano and Kristin Gallagher saw limited action. Gallagher played in 16 matches contributing with 34 digs and three kills. Galliano played in seven games.
VOLLEYBALL HONORS AND AWARDS
All-BIG EAST Second Team
GTE CoSIDA District I Academic All-America
UMass Invitational All-Tournament
UNH Tournament Most Valuable Player
Eagle Classic All-Tournament
Dartmouth Invitational All-Tournament
PC Athlete of the Week (9/9/96)
BIG EAST Player of the Week (11/11/96)
PC Athlete of the Week (11/11/96)
Providence's RAIAW Female Athlete of the Year
Providence's Nominee for NCAA Athlete of the Year
BIG EAST Player of the Week
PC Athlete of the Week (10/6/96)
St. Mary's Invitational All-Tournament