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When Georgetown College volleyball hit well it rolled in the NAIA Volleyball National Championship Opening Round. But, the two sets the No. 12 Tigers (33-9) struggled old woes of errors reared its ugly head and made it a battle against Lourdes University (21-13). GC had enough to pull out a tight third set and win in four, 25-18, 20-25, 25-23, 25-16.
"We knew today would be a battle," said GC coach Nick Griffin. "This is not the same Lourdes team we saw back in September at the Rumpke. They have been playing really well and beat two Top 25 teams in order to get to this point.
"After winning set one, we knew Lourdes was not going to go quietly. We had all we could handle in set two and three, but pushing through and winning that third set was huge. It was a momentum swing. We came out and controlled the fourth for the win."
Georgetown books a return trip to the 2013 NAIA Volleyball National Championship, presented by J&L Enterprises and CNOS Foundation.
This is the Tigers second straight and 16 overall.
Georgetown seemed well in control of set three, 16-10, but LU rallied scoring 13 of the next 20 points to tie it at 23. Caraline got the ball back for GC with a kill and Rachel Eubanks ended the threat with a kill for the 25-23 win.
Maher and Eubanks led the team with double-digit kills, 13 and 11 respectively. Corri Muha was fierce at times with nine kills and a team-high .500 with just 16 swings.
Stephanie Gurren led the way in assists, picking up two of her 29 on those critical set three plays. Lindsey Martindale added 23.
Courtney Grafton continued to be the driving force on defense with 23 digs. Georgetown had 13 errors in the two middle sets, allowing scrappy Gray Wolves a chance to battle.
LU was led by Angie Pagan-Perez's match-high 15 kills, nine coming in the second and third sets. She hit .333 percent in the sets Lourdes threatened, but finished with just .256 for the game. Allegra Recknagel orchestrated the offense with 36 assists and Michi Jimenez finished with 23 digs.
Georgetown won the first meeting between these two teams in straight sets during the Tigers' Rumpke Invitational.
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