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No. 12 Penn State Women’s Volleyball Sweeps Temple In Three Sets

No. 12 Penn State women’s volleyball (4-2) blanked Temple (6-2) Friday night at the Liacouras Center in Philadelphia.

The commonwealth battle proved to be a dominant affair for Penn State in the teams’ first meeting since August 31, 2018, and the Owl’s first volleyball game in the Liacouras Center in program history.

Collectively, the Nittany Lions tallied 46 kills and eight service aces, with no kills from AVCA Player of the Week Jess Mruzik, en route to their fourth straight win after a 0-2 start. Zoe Weatherington also put up an astonishing .500 hitting percentage with 11 kills.

How It Happened

The Nittany Lions started their trip to Philly with a 4-0 offensive run before Temple was able to get on the board. Camryn Hannah also earned a start for Penn State and had a kill and a block, and Allie Holland had three blocks, helping the team go up 8-2 before an Owl timeout.

Penn State continued to roll leading 13-4. The Owls closed the gap a bit 14-7 but two more points from the Nittany Lions forced another timeout for Temple. Penn State was also deadly at the service line with three aces.

Hannah and Weatherington were also dominant figures to close out the first set, with a combined eight kills. The Nittany Lions finished set one with a score of 25-9.

Set two saw a momentum shift for Temple, with them going on a 4-0 scoring run to tie up the score at six. Scrappy play for the Owls kept them close, but a setter dump from Mac Podraza and a point for a rotation error solidified the Nittany Lions lead once again 10-6.

Weatherington kept shining from both the left and right side of the court as Penn State led 18-10. Holland also added to her stat line totaling seven kills and four service aces before the end of the set.

Penn State was once again the first to reach 20 points, and Weatherington had back-to-back kills with a score of 22-11. The set then finished 25-15 to let the Nittany Lions go up two sets to none.

The concluding set brought Temple’s first lead of the night 3-2. But, Penn State pulled away 7-4 until the Owls crawled back and were down by two, 9-7.

The intensity then picked up for the Nittany Lions in the final stretch and they upped their lead 15-9 on a 4-0 run. Anjelina Starck also made an appearance pounding eight kills during her time on the court.

A late run for the Owls put them within two, 20-18, and they eventually took the lead 21-20. Penn State pulled away again 23-21, but the Owls came roaring back 23-23 to tie it up for the second timeout of the third set and caused a Penn State timeout. The score was knotted again at 24, and the Owls took the lead 25-24 on the next point.

Temple then reached its first set point, but Taylor Trammel had a kill to make the score 25-25. Hannah and Trammel then had a huge block to go up 26-25.

Despite the late push, the starters were able to reenter and get the job done 27-25 due to a hitting error from Temple.

Player Of The Game

Gillian Grimes | Libero/Defensive Specialist

While the offense was hot against the Owls, Grimes had some unbelievable plays on defense to keep Penn State on top. With four assists, 14 digs, and a service ace, the sophomore played a huge part in Friday’s game.

What’s Next?

The Nittany Lions will stay on the road with their next game at 1 p.m. on Sunday, September 10, against No. 2 Louisville on the road. The game will be on ESPN2.

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About the Author

Mara McKeon

Mara is a senior staff writer majoring in English and public relations. She loves all things sports and anything that has peanut butter. You can usually find her obsessing over country music or Penn State wrestling and counting down the days until she gets to see Luke Combs in Beaver Stadium. Feel free to reach her on Twitter @MckeonMara, and for more formal affairs, her email is [email protected].

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