Nov. 14, 1999
NOTRE DAME, Ind. – For the fourth time in five years, the Notre Dame volleyball team claimed the BIG EAST regular season title with a perfect 11-0 record following a dramatic come-from-behind victory over second place Georgetown, 1-15, 11-15, 15-7, 15-6, 17-15. With the win the Irish, who improved to 18-6 overall, also earned the top seed at next weekend’s BIG EAST Tournament, November 19-21, in Pittsburgh, Pa.
The Irish were led by senior Mary Leffers’ (Tampa, Fla.) game-high 18 kills on .469 hitting and season-best 10 blocks to record her first double-double of the season. Outside hitters Christi Girton (Muncie, Ind.) and Marcie Bomhack (Waukesha, Wis.) added 16 and 11 kills respectively, while senior Emily Schiebout (Blaine, Minn.) had 13 digs.
After losing game one 15-1 and game two 15-11, the Irish hit .381 and .500 respectively in the next two games to tie the match at two games apiece. In game five, Georgetown had an opportunity at 14-13 to win the match, but the Irish then tied the match at 14 before retaking the lead at 15-14. After the Hoyas tied the match again at 15, Notre Dame scored two unanswered points to win the game and match, 17-15.
“Georgetown played great and took us out of our rhythm early,” Notre Dame head coach Debbie Brown said. “I think we regained some of our composure in game two and played strong in games three and four. Game five just was a battle all the way.”
Georgetown, which fell to 25-4 overall and 9-2 in the BIG EAST, was led by outside hitter Kiran Gill, who had 15 kills and seven aces, and Lauren Warner, who contributed 10 kills, 11 digs and five aces.
“All of us were really aiming for the BIG EAST title, especially since we lost it last year, ” Brown said. “The team has shown tremendous character in getting where we are today.”
The Irish will have a bye in the first round of the six-team BIG EAST Tournament which will include: second-seed Georgetown (9-2), #3 Providence (8-3), #4 Rutgers (8-3), #5 Connecticut (7-4) and #6
Syracuse (5-6). Notre Dame faces the winner of the Rutgers-Connecticut match Saturday, Nov. 20, at 5:00 p.m.
BIG EAST CHAMPIONSHIP PAIRINGS
UNIVERSITY OF PITTSBURGH, FITZGERALD FIELD HOUSE,
FRIDAY NOVEMBER 19
#4 Rutgers vs. #5 Connecticut – Noon
#3 Providence vs. #6 Syracuse – 2:30 p.m.
SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 20
Semifinal 1: #1 Notre Dame vs. Match 1 winner – Noon
Semifinal 2: #2 Georgetown vs. Match 2 winner – 2:30 p.m.
SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 21
Semifinal 1 winner vs. Semifinal 2 winner – Noon