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Penn State Women’s Volleyball Sweeps Navy

No. 6 Penn State women’s volleyball swept the Naval Academy 3-0 in the second leg of a Saturday doubleheader at Rec Hall.

Taylor Leath led the Nittany Lions with 15 kills and eight digs in the 25-15, 25-21, 25-11 victory over the Midshipmen.

How It Happened

Leath and Nia Reed got off to strong starts offensively, while Kendall White, Jenna Hampton, and Jonni Parker showcased their tremendous defense with a combined 26 digs. Reed finished with 13 kills, two digs, and a block in another impressive outing.

Parker did a little bit of everything for the Nittany Lions on opening weekend. The versatile freshman’s career-high 11 kills during Saturday morning’s sweep of UMBC led the team. She also recorded eight digs and two service aces against the Retrievers.

Fellow freshman Gabby Blossom entered the match for the first time when Navy went up 16-15 in the second set, but the Nittany Lions would storm back to head into the intermission with a 2-0 lead.

Russ Rose singled out Tori Gorrell and Gabby Blossom Friday for their positive energy.

Blossom was named Missouri’s Gatorade State Player of the Year as a senior at St. Joseph’s Academy and captured the 2018 Andi Collins Award, which recognizes the nation’s top high school setter. Bryanna Weiskircher, who had 31 assists, is clearly Penn State’s starter at the position, but Blossom should continue to turn heads this season.

“I think any time you play the Academy teams, you’re going to be playing individuals who are smart, in great shape, and committed to the team aspect of the sport. Tonight was certainly no different,” Rose said of the Midshipmen.

“I thought Taylor had her best match to date and Nia had a good night offensively,” Rose continued. “Kendall, I thought, played really good defense. Bayleigh [Hoffman] came in in the first and third game and was able to generate four points both times.”

Player of the Match

Taylor Leath | Outside hitter

The State College Area High School standout has been an excellent two-way player for the Nittany Lions in her first few matches. Leath graduated from North Carolina before transferring to Penn State for her final season of eligibility.

What’s Next?

The Nittany Lions (3-0) welcome Temple and Texas A&M to Rec Hall next Friday and Saturday in the Penn State Invitational. Both matches are scheduled to start at 7:30 p.m.

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About the Author

Ethan Kasales

Ethan’s a senior journalism major who grew up in Lemont, a few minutes from campus. When he’s not covering Penn State sports, you can usually find him golfing or teaching snowboarding at Tussey Mountain. Feel free to email him at [email protected]

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