Juniata Volleyball Claims Another Conferennce Title
HUNTINGDON, Pa. -- For the 30th straight year, Juniata College women's volleyball will put a conference championship plaque on the wall of the Kennedy Sports + Recreation, winning the 2010 Landmark Conference championship on Saturday with a 3-0 win over Susquehanna University.
Set scores for the Eagles were 25-11, 25-10, and 25-7.
Juniata (30-5) hit .393 against Susquehanna (25-12), led by middle hitter Kristin Noetzel (Closter, N.J./Northern Valley Regional) and outside hitter Drew Barnhart (Titusville, Pa./Titusville) with 11 kills each, while opposite Kelsey Fuller (Red Lion, Pa./Red Lion) put away eight terminations. Noetzel also logged six blocks against the Crusaders, part of Juniata's tally of 9.0 team blocks.
Senior setter Steph Strauss (Penn Hills, Pa./Penn Hills) logged 29 assists while running the efficient Juniata offense.
The Eagles' Libby Morrison (Portland, Ore./Oregon Episcopal School) engineered Juniata's final set bruising of the Crusaders. With Morrison serving, Juniata rattled off 12 straight points on its way to the set three win. Two of the points came off Morrison service aces, while Noetzel tallied a block and four kills, including the match-winning point.
The second set proved to be a little foreshadowing of the third set, as Juniata broke open a 12-8 score with three straight points with Taylor Harpster (Philipsburg, Pa./Philipsburg-Osceola) serving. The Harpster-led run, which began with an ace by the freshman, launched a 13-2 run by the Eagles to finish the set. A Susquehanna attack error off Strauss' serve clinched the set two win.
Susquehanna outside hitter Lindsey Jankiewicz finished with five kills, leading a Crusader squad that hit -.014 for the match. Libero Kelly O'Brien turned up 12 digs for Susquehanna, while Emily Carson was one of two players with three kills and also recorded two blocks.
In the tournament semifinals earlier on Saturday, Juniata notched a 3-0 win over Moravian College, winning by set scores of 25-17, 25-18, and 25-10.
Fuller led the Juniata hitters with 11 kills while hitting .429 on 21 swings, while adding two blocks. Barnhart and Amanda Schmidt (Boswell, Pa./North Star) each finishing with seven terminations. The Strauss-guided offense hit .274 versus the Greyhounds, with Strauss setting 24 assists.
Noetzel logged five kills with two blocks, and Courtney Greenberg (Fort Myers, Fla./Fort Myers) set eight assists and served jup three aces.
The win gave Juniata the Landmark Conference's automatic qualifier into the NCAA Division III Women's Volleyball Championship. The Eagles will learn their Regional destination and opposition when the full 63-team field for the tournament is announced on Monday, Nov. 8, at 11:00 a.m.
Story provided by Juniata Sports Information