Niagara University 3, Rider University 0
Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference Match
NIAGARA UNIVERSITY, N.Y.--The Rider University volleyball team lost in straight sets at defending Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference champion Niagara University Sunday afternoon.
The Purple Eagles won 25-15, 25-21, 25-16.
"Hands down, Niagara is the best team that we've seen in conference play," said head coach Christopher Feliciano. "We rose to the occasion and we never gave up. I'm proud of the effort in both matches this weekend. These two matches (Canisius and Niagara) is a tough trip."
For Rider (4-18, 2-8 MAAC), freshman Jaclyn Webber (Anaheim, Calif./Canyon) had 10 kills and five digs, hitting .222 with freshman Ashlee Amatulli (Menifee, Calif./Temecula Valley) adding 14 assists and five digs.
The Broncs hit a respectable .220 for the match but Niagara (15-7, 10-0 MAAC) was even better, hitting .379.
"We had a six-point lead in the second set but couldn't finish," Feliciano added. "Everything was clicking and then Niagara used its veteran experience to come back and we couldn't put the set away. We had flashes of good play and that's a positive. Even though we lost, it is a good feeling for them to know that they can compete with the best in the conference. That is something we can build on."
The Purple Eagles had 12 services to two for Rider.
Niagara has won 15 of 21 matches all-time against the Broncs. Last season, the Purple Eagles won 3-0 at Niagara and 3-0 in Lawrenceville to sweep the season series. The teams meet again November 12 in Alumni Gymnasium.
The Broncs have lost seven in a row.
Rider travels to the capital region of New York for a pair of MAAC matches, taking on Siena on October 22 and Marist October 23.
"We've been pretty competitive with everyone in the conference and most were hard fought matches," Feliciano said. "We just have to stay confident, remember the positives from those matches and move forward. I'm happy with the way the team is coming together. They are holding their heads high and have kept fighting. And we will continue to do that. The second time around in conference play is going to be very exciting."