Six Time National Champions- Congrats Girls!

Six Time National Champions- Congrats Girls!

Flashing lights, twirling confetti, ecstatic screams, and satisfied smiles danced around the NCAA National Championship trophy Saturday night. Penn State closed the season with their sixth national championship win, which ties them with Stanford for the most championships ever won. The girls struggled to put into words the thousands of feelings bouncing around the arena as they hugged each other and got their hands on the trophy for the first time.

Ariel Scott led the team with an astounding 21 kills, followed by Katie Slay with 14 and Deja McClendon with 11. The three seniors earned a spot on the NCAA All- Tournament team. Junior, Micha Hancock really stepped up with 48 assists and 16 digs, adding to her familiar stellar performance from the service line with three aces. She earned the NCAA tournament most outstanding player honor for her performance.

In the first set, Penn State and Wisconsin switched off with small leads. PSU rallied a 4-0 streak to make the score 20-15 and forced the Badgers into a timeout. After the break, Wisconsin fought back to only a four-point deficit (22-18), but Courtney quickly shut that down with a solo stuff that excited the crowd and the team. Another kill and PSU had reached the match point (24-19), taken care of by Scott and the Nittany Lions were up 1-0.

Excited after the first win, PSU quickly scored a 6-1 lead in the second set. A bit of back and forth points and the team found themselves tied with Wisconsin at 15-15. An error here, a kill there, a big dig, and a swift ace, once again the teams went back and forth until they came to another tie at 24-24. Déjà vu, Scott followed the tie with two quick kills to end the second set 26-24. Penn State was up 2-0.

After the break, Penn State picked up where they left off with an early lead in set three. The Badgers made their presence known, erased the Penn State lead and their rhythm for the rest of the set. The Nittany Lions were shaken up and couldn’t answer to Wisconsin in the third set where they fell to a loss 25-20.

Ready to fight in the fourth, PSU kept a pretty steady two point lead throughout the set. Until Wisconsin took a four point streak to make the score 17-15 and force Penn State into a timeout. Point for point the teams battled to a tie at 23-23. An ace from Hancock and a kill from McClendon declared the win, and the rest was history.

penn state national champions