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Georgetown College volleyball was the heavy favorite, but needed to battle for every point against Point Park University in the 2015 NAIA National Volleyball Championship Opening Round. The Pioneers (17-24) erased eight set points in the first two sets and started strong in the third.
However, the No. 12 Tigers (29-6) proved why they were the top team in the opening round matches in a straight set 25-20, 25-15, 25-19 win.
PPU ended the second set by erasing six set points and ended with an error before opening set three with a 3-0 lead. Georgetown collected itself and responded with 14 of the next 17 points and left nothing in doubt in punching its ticket for the fourth straight year to the final site matches in Sioux City, Iowa.
The tournament continues Dec. 1 with pool play. Three days of that culminates in 12 teams advancing to single-elimination until one champion is left.
Georgetown College volleyball has had a solid season to date. The No. 12 Tigers (28-6) have posted 21 straight-set wins and only been beaten twice in three.
Monday morning the NAIA announced GC will for the fourth straight season be host for an NAIA Volleyball National Championship Opening Round match 7:30 pm Saturday at Davis-Reid Alumni Gym. The winner of this match advances to the final site of the tournament in Sioux City, Iowa for pool-play and single-elimination Dec. 1-5.
"We were obviously disappointed to drop a spot with a late surge of significant wins," said GC coach Nick Griffin. "However, this is a position we have been in before and look forward to being part of the national tournament."
Georgetown College volleyball looked to defend its Mid-South Conference tournament title and three-peat Saturday in the finals against Lindsey Wilson College.
Unfortunately a very slow start and some unlucky bounces resulted in a 25-23, 25-19, 25-19 loss for the No. 11 Tigers (28-6).
"Losing in the way we did was very disappointing," said GC coach Nick Griffin. "It's hard to overcome 17 missed serves in three sets against a quality opponent like Lindsey. Despite so many unforced errors, I was proud of the way our team battled to the end. Now our focus shifts to the NAIA National Tournament."
As the rankings currently stand, the Tigers would advance directly to the final site of the tournament in Sioux City, Iowa. However, the final rankings of the season come out Sunday. If Georgetown slips even one spot, the team will play an opening round match Nov. 21 in Davis-Reid Alumni Gym.
A pair of monumental moments won by Georgetown College volleyball proved to be the difference in a very tough, well-played Mid-South Conference semifinal match against St. Catharine College at South Warren High School in Bowling Green, Ky.
"It's hard, very hard, to beat a team three times and one that is so similar to us," said senior Lauren Schneidtmiller. "Playing them is like what we see in practice every day. The speed and determination to keep points going, you just have to finally put one away."
The No. 11 Tigers (28-5) certainly did that – 53 kills – as they tallied their 21st straight-set win 25-23, 31-29, 25-11. The team advances to the finals for the 20th time (GC has never not made it to the finals), looking to three-peat as postseason champions. The finals are set for 3 pm EST against No. 2 Lindsey Wilson College.
GC held the Patriots (27-12) to just 34 kills and turned the match with a spirit-breaking, second-set rally victory. After trailing by five twice, Georgetown never quit and once the team finally started to string service points together it erased that deficit to be up 2-0 in sets.
Postseason always brings a bit of the jitters and sometimes fierce competition from those facing do or die for their season. Georgetown College experienced some of both Thursday in the quarterfinals of the Mid-South Conference tournament.
Sets one and two had interesting moments, but nothing the No. 11 Tigers (27-5) could not handle.
Life University came in as the seventh seed with a 17-13 record. The MSC volleyball newcomers erased some large deficits, but could never overcome in the gaps in a 25-17, 25-19, 25-22 loss.
"You can't take any game for granted at this point," said GC coach Nick Griffin. "I was proud of the way we fought when we needed to and that we finished it off. Now we have to face a very good and scrappy St. Catharine team."
GC advances on to face St. Catharine College (27-11) in the semifinals Friday. Match is set for 7 pm at South Warren High School in Bowling Green, Ky.
|(12) Georgetown vs|
|NAIA National Tournament Dec. 1-5 - Tyson Events Center|
|Point Park University at||0|
|NAIA National Tournament Opening Round|