Monaca, PA. – The Penn State Greater Allegheny Volleyball team dropped both games on day one of the United States Collegiate Athletic Association Tip-off Tournament, falling to Carlow 3-0 and PSU-Mont Alto 3-1. They battled throughout the afternoon, but couldn’t pull out a victory on the day
They started the day with a non-conference match-up against Carlow and, despite playing tough throughout, fell in the end 3-0. PSUGA showed the ability to start quick jumping out to a 6-2 lead to start the first set of the day. However, Carlow battled back to bring the score to 6-4 eliminating the early advantage.
The lead would change hands four times during the set until the teams were tied 24-24 forcing a win-by-two scenario. Carlow would get the final two points on a PSUGA service error and a bad set giving the Celtics the 26-24 set win and a 1-0 lead in the match. PSUGA found themselves down but never lost their fight as they entered the second set.
It was once again a hot start for PSUGA as they jumped out to a 6-1 lead thanks to the serving of freshman Angelina Alpirez (San Jacinto, CA./San Jacinto HS). Alpirez rallied off four straight serves during the rally forcing Carlow to take some bad touches. That early advantage would be wiped away once again as Carlow tied things at 6-6 with a five-point rally of their own.
It was another back and forth set as the teams would once again find themselves tied at 24-24 by the end of set two. Once again, Carlow would collect the final two points and hold a 2-0 lead through two sets. It was Carlow who took the advantage in the third set leading 16-7 halfway through the action.
PSUGA continued to battle getting as close as 22-11 before Carlow finished out the set completing the clean sweep with a 24-12 win. Sueriah Timsah (Mesquite, TX./West Mesquite HS) led the way tying for the team lead with six kills and 11 digs on the afternoon. Alix Ellis (Derry, PA./Derry Area HS) added six kills while Juliana Brill (Mount Jackson, VA./Stonewall Jackson HS) paced the defense with 11 digs.
Game two started with PSU-Mont Alto taking the first set 25-17 and once again PSUGA found themselves working from behind. However, they rallied for their first set win of the season 27-25 in set two to tie things up at one set apiece. Mont Alto began the set in front 10-7 before PSUGA started its comeback.
PSUGA went on a 5-2 run to take their first set lead 15-13 and held it until the very end when PSU-Mont Alto tied things up at 24-24 forcing the win-by-two scenario. After each team traded a point PSUGA got kills by Timsah and Ellis to secure the 27-25 win. PSU-Mont Alto went on to win the next two sets by the scores of 25-23 and 25-23 to complete the 3-1 win.
TImsah was back at it again in game two, leading the way offensively with eight kills and 12 digs. Brill led the defense picking up 13 digs while grabbing three service aces in the loss. While they did not pull out a win in either game, they got valuable experience that will help them into the season.
PSUGA Volleyball has a quick turn-around getting back to action on Saturday where they will play at 4 p.m. against the #3 seed from poll four of the USCAA Tip-off Tournament.