2011 Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Volleyball Championship (Day 3 Recap)
Albany, GA— The third day of the 25th Annual SIAC Volleyball Championship found four teams still in contention for the coveted SIAC Crown. Defending champ Kentucky State University; Claflin University; Albany State University; and Benedict College all had their eyes fixed on the conference prize. The only thing that stood in their way was each other. Held in the Albany State University Health and Physical Education & Recreation (HPER) Gymnasium, the following are recaps from the Championship Round:
#1W Kentucky State University vs #3E Albany State University
The 2011 SIAC Volleyball Championship match featured two teams that are no strangers to the SIAC Volleyball title. The Thorobrettes of Kentucky State University (KSU) were the defending conference champions and prior to last year, the Lady Rams of Albany State University (ASU) had won nine consecutive SIAC crowns.
While the championship history of both teams is impressive, the this year’s title came down to the team with the best performance on championship day. That performance was given by the Thorobrettes of Kentucky State University. After dropping the first game 23-25, KSU galloped back to claim the next three games (31-29, 25-22, 25-15) to claim the crown.
The offense for the Thorobrettes was led by Emily Grieshaber, Audrey Sherles, and Erica Coleman with 15, 10 and nine kills, repectively. Brittany Stewart issued 56 assists while Sherles and Ashlie Jones had three service aces each. The Thorobrettes were led defensively by Markeshia Williams with 17 digs. For her efforts, Williams was named Libero of the Tournament. Stewart’s contribution also extended to the Thorobrettes defense with 13 digs.
The Lady Rams were led in the championship match by Jillian Anderson and Sabrina Garcia. Anderson had 17 kills and Garcia finished with nine. Garcia was voted to the SIAC All-Tournament Team. Teammate Jennifer Johnson had 39 assists and 14 digs in the title game and was voted Setter of the Tournament.
Defensively, the Lady Rams got 13 digs from Sharme Ridley; another 12 digs from Adrienne Morris; and four solo blocks from Tiffany Butler. The Lady Rams finished the season with a 21-16 record.
With the win, the Thorobrettes will receive the automatic bid to represent the SIAC in the NCAA Regional Tournament.
Semifinals (Third Place)
#3E Albany State University defeats #1E Claflin University (14-25, 25-16, 25-17, 26-24)
In the semi-final match, the Lady Panthers of Claflin University and the Lady Rams of Albany State University met to determine who would advance to the Championship. Waiting in the wings for the winner is the tournament’s only undefeated team, the Lady Thorobreds of Kentucky State University.
After four intense games, it was the Lady Rams who earned the right to advance to the title match. The Lady Panthers bowed out of the tournament and finished the season with a 29-9 record.
Sabrina Garcia led the offense for the Lady Rams with 15 recorded kills. Sharme Ridley and Amber Gatlin logged 12 kills each and Jennifer Johnson tallied 41 assists.
Ridley also highlighted the Lady Ram defense with 16 digs. Andrienne Morris finished with 12 digs
Lauren Calvin led the Lady Panthers with a match-high 24 kills. Chelcey Foster totaled 10 kills and 12 digs. Katherin Fischer dished out a match-high 46 assists. Defensively, Courtney Person ended the match with 14 digs for the Lady Panthers.
#1E Claflin University defeats #2E Benedict College (25-16, 25-22, and 25-18)
In the first match of day, Claflin University and Benedict College matched up to determine who would advance to the semi-finals against Albany State University at 12 noon. Claflin University (29-8) defeated Benedict (16-7) to advance.
Claflin played inspired volleyball by winning in three straight games. The Lady Panthers displayed determination in the win by coming back from as many as seven points in the second game. With the win, the Lady Panthers will now appear in the conference semi-finals for the second consecutive year.
First Team All-SIAC outside hitter Lauren Calvin led Claflin with 17 killls and seven assisted blocks. Chelcey Foster recorded 12 kills and SIAC Setter of the Year Katherin Fischer dished out 34 assists. Defensively, Courtney Person contributed 14 digs and Chrishena Craig added eight.
Benedict was led by LaTayvia Mack with 12 kills and five digs. Ashley Jackson distributed 23 assists, and five digs, and four service aces. Lorena Leao recorded 11 digs, while Ruth Ann Simms added nine.
2011 SIAC Volleyball All-Tournament Team
Sabrina Garcia, Albany State University
LaTayvia Mack, Benedict College
Lauren Calvin, Claflin University
Ayanna Parker, Kentucky State University
Jamila McKinnis, Stillman College
Setter of the Tournament
Jennifer Johnson, Albany State University
Libero of the Tournament
Markeisha Williams, Kentucky State
Ayanna Parker, Kentucky State University
Coach of the Tournament
Kyetta May, Kentucky State University
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Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SIAC)
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