McKeesport, PA. – The Penn State Greater Allegheny Volleyball Team (1-4, 1-0) picked up their first win of the season in their Penn State University Athletic Conference opener on Saturday against Penn State Mont Alto (1-3, 0-1) 3-0. PSUGA played from behind in all three sets but showed strong resiliency battling back to take each of those sets.
PSU-Mont Alto grabbed the momentum early jumping out to a 6-3 lead in the first set before PSUGA battled back to take their first lead of the set 7-6. The teams battled back and forth throughout the set trading rallies before PSUGA pulled away for good and picked up a big set one win 25-20. They were feeling good and had all the momentum heading into set two.
That is when freshman Seiblesierra Ili (Barstow, CA./Barstow HS) took over from the server’s box. PSU-Mont Alto jumped out to the early lead once again sitting at 4-1 before PSUGA battled back and made the score 9-8 Mont Alto. That is when Ili knocked off 16 straight serves pulling PSUGA out to a 24-9 lead before they eventually picked up the set win 25-10. During that stretch, Ili scored four service aces including three in a row to lead her team.
The final set of the day was another back and forth battle with each team matching each other point for point. PSUGA had a 22-19 lead late in the set and Alix Ellis (Derry, PA./Derry Area HS) would help finish the day recording the final three kills and giving PSUGA the 25-21 set win and the clean sweep of Mont Alto.
Ellis once again led the offensive attack finishing the day with a career high 15 kills on 25 total attack opportunities. Sophomore Kaylee Holtzman (McKeesport, PA./McKeesport HS) finished right behind her with 7 kills and Sueriah Timsah (Mesquite, TX./West Mesquite HS) rounded out the offense with 6 kills. Ili led the team with 23 assists and 4 service aces while Kimmy Tinker (Ewing, IL./Benton Consolidated HS) led the way with nine digs on the day.
PSUGA has done a good job of grabbing the momentum in the match early over their last two games picking up set one wins in each of those contests. Saturday’s win was a big one to start conference play and after missing the PSUAC playoffs last season by a few games, their goal this season is to not only make it but compete for a PSUAC Championship.
PSUGA Volleyball returns to action on Friday September 14th when they take on Kent State Tuscarawas in non-conference action here in the Wunderly Gymnasium. It will be the last non-conference game before the PSUAC half of their schedule starts to heat up.