NCAA Volleyball Championship (Dec. 5)
Kentucky 3, Oakland 0 (25-20, 28-26, 25-19)
Melissa Deatsch's double-double of 10 kills and 14 digs led a gritty effort in Oakland's first-ever appearance in the NCAA Volleyball Tournament in the Golden Grizzlies' three-set loss to 13th-seed Kentucky at the Memorial Coliseum Friday evening. Oakland battled hard before falling, 25-20, 28-26, 25-19.
Oakland's defense was diligent throughout, racking up 61 digs to fend off Kentucky. Along with Deatsch's 14 digs, Allia Knight (15) and Taylor Humm (14) reached double figures in digs. Ciara Schultz and Alli Gutschow added eight digs apiece.
Cassie Pelloni led Oakland's attack with 12 kills on a .250 hitting percentage, while Jessica Dood added nine kills.
Oakland were within striking distance of taking the second set, serving twice for set point. But Kentucky battled back and made good on their own second set point to take a 2-0 lead into the intermission.
Despite facing a longer squad in Kentucky, Oakland registered 10 blocks, with Sammy Condon (1-2) and Amanda Baker (0-3) leading with three blocks.
Oakland ends its season with a 22-10 record after posting its longest winning streak (10) in NCAA Division I history and capturing both its first conference regular season and tournament championships.
(Release courtesy of Sheila Blackman, Oakland Athletics)