Volleyball Report: Western Washington 18th in AVCA Poll
Katlyn  Mataya had 118 assists last weekend as Alaska Fairbanks posted a 2-1 record in the UAF Nanook Classic (UAF Photo).
Katlyn Mataya had 118 assists last weekend as Alaska Fairbanks posted a 2-1 record in the UAF Nanook Classic (UAF Photo).

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

PORTLAND, Ore. - GNAC teams posted a combined 18-13 record in the opening weekend of action last weekend and perhaps not coincidentally three conference teams received mention in the AVCA national poll this week.

Western Washington leaped into the Top 25 at No. 18 after being unranked last week.  Also receiving votes in this week’s poll were Central Washington and Seattle Pacific who finished among “others receiving votes” and were 27th and 33rd overall.

GEARY MVP AT WOU INVITATIONAL:  Western Washington outside hitter Marlayna Geary was selected the Most Valuable Player at the Western Oregon Invitational last weekend.  Joining Geary on the all-tournament were Western Oregon setter Laurie Yearout and Western Oregon middle blocker Krissi Kemper. . .Yearout averaged 12.0 assists per set and also had 10 blocks, while  Kemper had 30 kills and 16 blocks and hit for a .444 percentage as the Wolves won three of four matches. . .In addition to Geary (who had 59 kills), Western Washington was led by Kayla Erickson with 47 kills and a team-high 20 blocks.  Jennica McPherson had 45 kills and Emily Boerger had 31. . .Samantha Ward had 49 kills and Danielle Reese had 31 to pace Western Oregon.  Becky Blees had a team-high 22 blocks.

FELLOWS, GRIMSRUD ALL-TOURNEY IN HAWAII: Outside hitter Cailin Fellows of Seattle Pacific and middle blocker Monica Grimsrud of Montana State Billings earned all-tournament honors at the Outrigger Hotels and Resorts Invitational host by Chaminade and Hawaii Pacific. . .Fellows led the Falcons with 37 kills and 18 digs as Seattle Pacific split its four matches.  Grimsrud paced MSUB with 43 kills and also had 15 digs to lead the Yellowjackets.  Outside hitter Rupia Inck of Fresno Pacific was voted the Most Valuable Player. . .Seattle Pacific also got 31 kills each from Ellie Britt and Nikki Lowell.  Lowell also paced SPU with 16 blocks.  Chelsey Walter had 36 kills and Jody Lutz had 16 blocks for MSUB.

HARTHUN JOINS MATAYA ON NANOOK CLASSIC ALL-TOURNAMENT TEAM:  Alaska Fairbanks freshman outside hitter Sam Harthun joined setter Katlyn Mataya (See Red Lion Players-of-the-Week) on the Flint Hills Resources Nanook Classic all-tournament team.  Harthun led UAF, which posted a 2-1 record to match its entire 2011 win total, with 34 kills.  She also had the second most digs with 26.  Another freshman, Ixchelle Oleson had 29 kills and a .359 attack percentage for the Nanooks.  Findlay’s Danielle Taflinger was selected the MVP.  Findlay, Cal State East Bay and the Nanooks all posted 2-1 records.  Findlay was declared the tournament champion based on the tiebreaker criteria.

HJELLUM PACES CENTRAL TO 3-1 RECORD:  Outside hitter Marcy Hjellum had 60 kills and Erin Smith and Ranchel Hanses had 51 each as Central Washington won three of four matches in the Grand Canyon Invitational.  After knocking off 13th ranked Metro State, the Wildcats built a 2-0 lead against Grand Canyon before falling 3-2 to the host school.  Smith’s .500 hitting percentage (51-6-90) was the best in the GNAC during the opening weekend.    Central freshman setter Catie Fry averaged 10.12 assists and also had 12 blocks, the second most on the team.

FLORES LEADS CRUSADERS TO 3-1 RECORD:  Becky Flores had 50 kills and hit for a .343 hitting percentage to lead Northwest Nazarene to a 3-1 record in the Point Loma Nazarene Seaside Invitational.  NNU also got 38 kills from Kaitlyn Tuholski, 34 from Heather Allen and 32 from Elayna Rice in the victory.  Allen also had a team-high 13 blocks. . .NNU outhit its opponents .267 to .206 winning nine of 10 sets before losing its final match 3-0 to Azusa Pacific.

UAA FINISHES 1-3 IN SEASIDE INVITATIONAL:  Katelynn Zanders had 54 kills and Julia Mackey had 53 as Alaska Anchorage opened its season winning one of four matches in the Monterey Bay Otter Classic.   UAA also got 39 kills and 37 digs from Sarah Johnson .  Setter Kimya Jafroudi had 155 assists.  The Seawolves had a narrow .174 to .171 hitting advantage, despite being outblocked 30-17.

GNAC Players-of-the-Week Recap