McKeesport, PA. – The Penn State Greater Allegheny Volleyball team (0-4, 0-0) opens Penn State University Athletic Conference play on Wednesday when they take on Penn State Shenango (0-3, 0-0) at 7 p.m. Despite their record, PSUGA has played well all season long and gained momentum in their final non-conference tune-up game against Carlow on Monday night.
After dropping the first two sets each by the score of 25-22 to fall behind 2-0, PSUGA battled back and played some of their best volleyball of the season. They battled back and forth throughout the third set with the Celtics and had the game tied at 20-20 late in the third set. PSUGA would go on to score five of the final seven points and finished things off with a kill by freshman Alexa Martell (Elizabeth, Pa./Elizabeth Forward HS) that kept PSUGA alive and made the game score 2-1.
The fourth set saw Carlow get out to a 16-9 lead and made it look like they were going to run away with the set. However, PSUGA continued to battle back getting the score to 24-21 late in the set. With PSUGA against the ropes, sophomore Alix Ellis (Derry, Pa./Derry Area HS) went on a tear knocking down three straight kills to tie the game at 24-24. The teams traded points until the score sat at 27-27 and Carlow nailed down the last two set points to earn the win and the 3-1 victory.
Ellis had a career night leading the team with 25 kills on 58 total attack opportunities in the game. Her 25 kills fell just one short of the PSUGA single-game record of 26 that was held by former lion Tori Johnston. Juliana Brill (Mount Jackson, VA./Stonewall Jackson HS) led the defense with 23 digs and Sueriah Timsah (Mesquite, TX./West Mesquite HS) added 10 kills on the night.
PSUGA will look to take that momentum into their conference opener Wednesday night against PSU-Shenango. They are looking to get off to a 1-0 start to conference play for the second season in a row. Last year, they opened their conference play with a win over PSU-Mont Alto 3-1 marking the first 1-0 start in program history.
To do that, they will take on a PSU-Shenango team that is starting their first season of conference play. They opened up PSUAC play on Sunday when they fell to PSU-Mont Alto 3-1. After losing the first two sets, Shenango came back with a 25-21 win in set three before finishing the night falling 25-16 in the final set. Kylee Gooding led the way for Shenango with nine kills on 38 total attacks in the game.
Wednesday will mark the first match-up between these two teams with Shenango competing in their first season as a program. PSUGA has a career record of 66-76 against PSUAC competition and a 30-40 record inside the Wunderley Gymnasium.
Tip-off for Wednesday’s conference opener is scheduled for 7 p.m. with doors opening at 6 p.m. You can watch the game live at bit.ly/PSUGAYT and follow along with Live Stats at https://athleticsga.com/sports/wvball/2019-20/boxscores/20190911_b6f2.xml.