McKeesport, Pa. - With stand-out contribution from both sophomore outside hitter Tori Johnston (Pittsburgh, Pa./Baldwin) and freshman setter Courtney Odell Shadd (Hanover Park, Ill./Bartlett), the Penn State Greater Allegheny posted a 3-1 victory over Penn State New Kensington, Tuesday night.
The first set began with a 10-0 Greater Allegheny run, which comprised of six Shadd service aces. New Kensington got on the board a bit before both sophomore middle hitter Laura Vazquez Diaz (San Juan, Puerto Rico/Cupey Maria Montessori) and junior defensive specialist Jasmine Holtz (Pittsburgh, Pa./Brashear) got on the board. The first set ended with a Johnston kill from Shadd, 25-17 GA.
The second set began back and forth before Greater Allegheny pulled away. Johnston and Vazquez Diaz continue to strike while sophomore outside hitter Ellen Garcia (Philadelphia, Pa./Mastbaum AVTS) and Shadd got on the board with kills. Shadd dished out 12 assists through set two before Greater Allegheny earned the set by a 25-20 tally.
New Kensington was on a mission through the third set, as they took the lead from Greater Allegheny and never gave it back. Although Vazquez Diaz and Johnston got their strikes placed, the momentum was just too much to overcome. New Kensington showed out through the third set, 25-17.
The final set of the game also began at a Greater Allegheny disadvantage. The home team got down 7-2 before coach Gibbs called the timeout. After the break, Greater Allegheny came out ready to go. A pair of service aces from Holtz and Garcia alongside consecutive kills from Johnston and Vazquez Diaz lifted the Lions to where they wanted to be; the lead. Despite tying the game on six separate occasions, Greater Allegheny took the lead after the game was at a 20 all stand-off. Four service aces from Shadd put GA up 24-20 over New Kensington. They managed a few more before a Holtz kill from Shadd ended the night with a final mark of 25-23.
Through the PSUAC sets, Greater Allegheny posted a kill percentage of 33.7%. Johnston earned 26 kills while getting down for 14 digs and two service aces. Shadd dished out 43 assists while hammering down an incredible 18 service aces. She also got down for five digs with two kills on three total attacks. Vazquez completed 14 kills with nine digs, five assists and three service aces.
Greater Allegheny (2-5, 2-3 PSUAC) looks forward to the weekend, as they host their first Quad-Meet of the season. The GA Lions look to square-up against Penn State Hazleton in Wunderley Gymnasium at 2 p.m. before they take on Penn State Lehigh Valley around 4 p.m.