WASHINGTON - It was a festive and exciting Friday night in the Field House as Gallaudet University swept Penn St.-Berks in straight sets, 3-0, in a North Eastern Athletic Conference (NEAC) women's volleyball match on Senior Day and homecoming weekend.
Gallaudet (16-16, 8-3 NEAC) solidified its bid for a postseason berth with tonight's 25-11, 25-11, 26-24 victory over the Nittany Lions (8-21, 5-6 NEAC).
The Bison rolled in the first set thanks to the impressive 10-point serving streak by freshman Kelley Johnson (Wanamingo, Minn.), who recorded two aces during the string. GU went from leading 10-7 to being up 20-7.
In the second set, Penn St.-Berks jumped out early with a quick lead and later tied the set at 8-8 before Gallaudet scored 17 of the next 20 points. The final set was more back-and-forth and the visitors were a point away from ending the third set in their favor. Sophomore middle hitter Karita Lewis (Frederick, Md.) knocked down back-to-back kills, two of her nine on the night, and a Berks attack error ended the match.
Junior outside hitter Adele Daniels (Austin, Texas) recorded a double-double with 16 kills, 10 digs and added two aces and assists. Fellow outside hitter Tessa Lewis (Frederick, Md.) was second on the team with 11 kills. Senior middle hitter Shua Clay (Pembroke Pines, Fla.) recorded eight kills and three blocks (two solo). Freshman setter Emma Giuntoli (Austin, Texas) passed out 40 assists.
The Nittany Lions were led by Maddy Kessler's five kills, Mackenzie Reed's 16 assists and seven digs and Ashley Morris' three aces.
After the conclusion of this evening's match the Gallaudet volleyball program and Bison head coach Lynn Ray Boren and his coaching staff recognized this year's senior class. The class includes Clay, libero Raelyn Fuechtmann (South St. Paul, Minn.) and Tessa Lewis.
Fuechtmann, who got injured at the end of September, is a four-year letterwinner. She played 116 matches (396 sets), tallied 1,453 digs, 149 service aces, 122 assists and 25 kills.
Clay is a four-year letterwinner where she played in 94 matches (306 sets), recorded 357 kills, 259 blocks (70 solo), 65 digs and 13 assists. Clay was named the NEAC Women's Volleyball Defensive Student-Athlete of the Week (10/16/17) last season. Oct. 16, 2017.
Lewis is a three-year letterwinner and has saw action in 69 matches (235 sets) and accumulated 538 kills, 147 digs, 49 blocks (five solo) and eight assists.
Earlier in the day, Gallaudet's athletic department retired its first two women's volleyball jerseys. Bison all-time greats Ronda Jo Miller, '02 and Tamijo Foronda, '08 had their numbers 6 and 9, respectively, added to the Field House wall during a special luncheon. Before the start of the third set on Friday night, Miller and Foronda were recognized in front of 755 in the Field House.
- Freshman libero Mia Upchurch (Austin, Texas) made eight digs
- Junior Farrah Harmount (Union City, Calif.) tallied four digs
- Sophomore outside hitter Brynn Schmidt (Bozeman, Mont.) added two kills
- The Bison had six aces
- GU improves its home record to 9-2 in the Field House
Gallaudet will play in the NEAC tournament quarterfinal round on Tuesday, Oct. 30. Full details about who, where and time will be announced later this weekend.