MORRISVILLE, N.Y. - For the first time in program history the Gallaudet University women's volleyball team will not advance to the North Eastern Athletic Conference (NEAC) tournament championship match. The fourth-seed Bison were swept in straight sets here Saturday afternoon by top-seed Morrisville State, who won 20-25, 14-25, 22-25 in the semifinal round.
Morrisville State (24-6) will try and defend its NEAC championship tomorrow (Sunday, Nov. 4) at 1 p.m. against second-seed Lancaster Bible College (21-8), who defeated third-seed Wells College (17-12) in five sets, 3-2.
Gallaudet (17-17), who won seven consecutive NEAC titles from 2010-16, suffered its worst loss in NEAC tournament history. Last year, the Bison lost 3-1 to the Mustangs in the championship match.
The Bison scored the first two points of the match and held an early 3-1 lead in the first set but that was GU's only lead until midway through the third set.
Morrisville State (24-6) set the tone in the close first set as the Mustangs edged out the Bison, and the momentum gained led to a lopsided second set win.
GU had its backs against the wall in the third set but on four different occasions the Bison took the lead. Gallaudet's last lead came after a service ace by freshman Kelley Johnson (Wanamingo, Minn.) as the visitors led 17-16.
Gallaudet's All-NEAC first team outside hitter Adele Daniels (Austin, Texas) led the team with 16 kills and 10 digs for her 22nd double-double this season. GU's other all-conference honorees; senior Shua Clay (Pembroke Pines, Fla.) had three kills and one block, sophomore Karita Lewis (Frederick, Md.) had four kills and 15 digs and freshman setter Emma Giuntoli (Austin, Texas) passed out 26 assists.
NEAC Player of the Year Megyan Merrill led the Mustangs attack with 15 kills and 12 digs. Junior libero Sam Wolf, the 2018 NEAC Defensive Player of the Year, made 14 digs and three aces in the win.
- Gallaudet is 19-2 all-time in the NEAC tournament
- The Bison are 1-2 in last three NEAC tournament matches
- GU is 7-4 all-time against Morrisville St., the Mustangs have won the last four matches vs. Bison
- GU has played Morrisville St. three times (1-2) in the NEAC tournament since it joined the conference in 2010
- Gallaudet finishes the season at .500 winning percentage, its lowest since 2008
- The 17 wins this season is the lowest win total in a season during Coach Lynn Ray Boren's 14-year tenure
- The Bison went 3-7 in away matches this season
This marked the final Bison game for Clay in her four-year career. She set career-high marks for kills (191), blocks (101), block solos (28) and block assists (73) this season. The middle hitter finished with 371 kills, 244 blocks (71 solo), 67 digs and 14 assists in 96 matches (313) sets in four years. Senior libero Raelyn Fuechtmann (South St. Paul, Minn.), who has been sidelined with an injury for over a month, ends the 2018 season with 179 digs, 17 aces and 17 assists. In her four-year career, she tallied 1,453 digs, 149 service aces, 122 assists and 25 kills in 116 matches (396 sets).
This concludes the 2018 season for the Bison. GU will return three all-conference players next season and will look to build off of the experienced gained this season in 2019.