(PITTSBURGH, Pa.) - The Carnegie Mellon University volleyball team hosted the 2014 Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) Southwest Region Championship Saturday, November 15. In the semifinals, the Tartans defeated Bethany College 3-1 to advance to the championship and took second after dropping 3-1 against Geneva College.
In the first match of the day against Bethany, Carnegie Mellon won after a tight fourth set 25-20, 14-25, 26-24, and 31-29.
The Tartans were led on the attack by freshman outside hitter Heather Holton (Haslett, Mich./Haslett), who recorded 19 kills, a new career-high. With 11 kills, sophomore Jackie Gibbons (Evanston, Ill./Evanston Township), and 10 kills, senior Ali Celentano (Mission Viejo, Calif./JSerra Catholic), also added to the Tartans offensive strike. Leading the team in assists was sophomore setter Emily Newton (Manhattan Beach, Calif./Chadwick School) with 29 followed by freshman Amanda Thiele (Lakeland, Fla./George Jenkins) who added 17 assists. Newton also had four service aces against the Bison.
Defensively, sophomore libero Molly Higgins (Vero Beach, Fla./Vero Beach) had 25 digs and Celentano added 15. Freshman Eliza Donohue (Lancaster, Pa./Hempfield) held down the fort at the net recording a solo block and assisting with three for the Tartans.
In the championship match, the Tartans fell to the Geneva Golden Tornadoes. The offensive was led by Holton, who had another impressive showing with 18 kills as well as Gibbons who had 11. Newton added 22 assists in the setback. Higgins recorded 33 digs and Celentano added 19 to lead the Tartans defensively. Gibbons and Donohue each had a solo block at the net.
The Tartans completed their 2014 season with a record of 23-12.