ATHENS, Ga. - The University of Georgia volleyball team controlled three straight-sets to overtake the Alabama A&M Bulldogs, 25-17, 25-9, 25-18, advancing to the second round of the National Invitational Volleyball Championship.
The win marks the first postseason victory in program history since 1995, when Georgia defeated Marshall in the NCAA Tournament.
Alabama A&M's 25 points, 16 kills, 66 attempts, 15 assists and .045 hitting percentage each totaled to the lowest outputs of a Georgia opponent this season. The last time an opponent had 20 kills or less against Georgia was against Savannah State in 2016.
The stout offensive effort was led by a team-leading 11 kills from Rachel Ritchie, marking the freshman's 23rd double-digit kill performance of the season. Junior Majesti Bass followed with eight kills, posting a .500 hitting percentage.
"It's all attributed to our focus on winning and that's who we are at our core," redshirt senior Amanda Dachs said. "In the postseason, we are committed to being the best growing team and the best learning team by getting in the gym and watching film. That's what we're going to be about."
Georgia jumped to a quick 4-0 lead in the first frame with a pair of kills from redshirt freshman Kianna Young. The Bulldogs continued the offensive ambush throughout the opening set, separating itself by as many as 11 points for the 20-9 lead. Freshman Dalaney Hans sealed the 1-0 lead with a kill, assisted by Kendall Glover.
In the second set, Georgia prevented Alabama A&M from breaking into double-digits. Freshman Kendall Glover produced four services as the Bulldogs collected 10 unanswered points to seal the set, 25-9.
The Georgia command continued with a similar 10-1 run in the final frame. Sophomore setter Meghan Donovan guided the scoring output from behind the service line and provided five assists to set up kills from sophomore Katie Houser, Dachs and sophomore Anna Kate Karstens. A block from Hans and Karstens secured the sweep for the Georgia match point.
Up next, Georgia plays host to UCF on Wednesday at 7 p.m. at the Ramsey Center in the second round of the NIVC Tournament. The match will be available for streaming on SEC Network +.