Saturday, October 31, 2020

Underclassmen step up for women's volleyball during UAB/Stamford Invitational

September 1, 2014

The women’s volleyball team is undefeated, and a big reason why is because of the contributions of underclassmen.

No. 14 MSU (4-0) swept the competition at the UAB/Samford Invitational over the weekend. The Spartans won three of the four games in the minimum three sets.

“Samford provided the biggest challenge,” George said, whose team ultimately won 3-1 (25-12, 25-12, 31-33, 25-19).

Sophomore middle blocker and opposite hitter Allyssah Fitterer was named MVP of the tournament, registering 15 digs, four service aces and nine blocks.

The No. 6 freshmen class in the nation, according to PrepVolleyball.com, contributed right away.

“I am pleased with some of the headway (the freshmen) are making,” Head Coach Cathy George said.

Freshman setter Rachel Minarick saw significant playing time, finishing with a team-high 123 assists and 30 digs.

Freshman middle blocker Alyssa Garvelink played in 11 of the team’s 13 sets. She had 22 kills and 15 blocks during the tournament.

Freshman outside hitter Holly Toliver played in all but one set of action, totaling 36 kills and 11 digs.

Not to be outdone by the young players, senior libero Kori Moster led the team with 51 digs and was named to the All-Tournament team.

Sophomore outside hitter Chloe Reinig was also named to the All-Tournament team. She finished .333 hitting percentage and nine blocks.

After a successful weekend, MSU returns to East Lansing and shifts their focus to the Big Ten/ACC Challenge.

“We will start off (preparing) right away,” George said, “Duke and North Carolina are very strong teams.”

The Spartans will play host to No. 20 North Carolina on Friday at 7 p.m. and No. 19 Duke Saturday at 5 p.m.

“Our focus really needs to be on our execution and what we’re doing,” George said.

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