Tigers Sweep Through MSU Classic

Sept. 4, 1999

EAST LANSING, Mich. – Clemson used 16 kills, eight digs and five blocks by tournament MVP Cindy Stern as the Tigers defeated No. 22 Michigan State, 15-3, 15-11, 15-7, in the determining match of the L&L/MSU Volleyball Classic on Saturday, Sept. 4 in Jenison Field House. Clemson did not lose a single game in its four tournament wins. Texas A&M finished second with a 3-1 record, followed by the Spartans at 2-2, Cleveland State at 1-3 and Eastern Kentucky at 0-4.

Alison Coday added 15 kills and eight digs for Clemson, while setter freshman setter Jessi Betcher, just 5-foot-6, had 43 assists, two service aces and nine digs in the win. Clemson hit .404 as a team to MSU’s .129 and outdug the Spartans 49-30.

“We are very excited with the tournament win,” said Clemson head coach Jolene Hoover. Jessi (Betcher) did an unbelievable job all weekend. She is our first Fab 50 recruit at Clemson. Many other schools didn’t look at her because of her size, but if you look at her, she has the whole package: leadership, creativity and athletic ability. We hit .400 as a team tonight against a very good team, and I think that hitting percentage is indicative of her decision making and athletic ability.

Cindy (Stern) has a great shot at being an All-American this year. I think she’s been largely overlooked nationally because some other conference have stronger reputations (than the ACC). However, ACC teams beating other strong non-conference teams will help that reputation. I think we did a lot in helping that reputation by our performance this weekend. I’m excited for our team, I’m excited for our conference.”

Michigan State was led by all-tournament team member Jessica Sanborn with nine kills and a match-high 10 digs and outside hitter Sarah Gustin with 14 kills and two digs. Setter Christie Landry added 30 assists and six digs.

“We lost to a better team tonight,” said MSU head coach Chuck Erbe. “We need to regroup and work on some things in practice this week and get ready for next weekend. This was an excellent learning experience for the whole team.”

Clemson            4-0Texas A&M          3-1Michigan State     2-2Cleveland State    1-2Eastern Kentucky   0-4

Tournament MVP: Cindy Stern

All-Tournament Team: Jessi Betcher, Clemson, Jodi Steffes, Clemson, Amber Woolsey, Texas A&M, Lauri Leahy, Texas A&M, Jessica Sanborn, MSU.

Results from Saturday, Sept. 4

No. 16 Texas A&M 3, Eastern Kentucky 0 Texas A&M used a balanced offensive attack to outhit Eastern Kentucky 37 kills-14 en route to a 15-6, 15-0, 15-2 win. Celia Howes led all hitters with eight kills, while Amber Woolsey tallied seven kills and a match-high four blocks. Jenna Moscovic and Claire Harvey combined for 25 assists and eight digs while Michele Cole had a match-best nine digs. The Aggies hit .389 to EKU’s -.048.

Becky Galati tallied four kills for the Colonels and added eight digs.

Clemson 3, Cleveland State 0 Clemson started fast and never relented in a 15-0, 15-6, 15-8 defeat of Cleveland State. Cindy Stern hit .792 on 19 kills (19-0-24) to go with five digs and three blocks to help the Tigers hit .483 as a team to CSU’s .186. Mallory Benson added seven kills (.667), while Jodi Steffes hit .500 with six kills and a match-high eight digs. Clemson added 12 service aces in the match.

Cleveland State was paced by 13 kills on .500 hitting from Michele Smith and 11 kills and six digs from Molly Hoying.

No. 22 Michigan State 3, Eastern Kentucky 0 Michigan State was led by Sarah Gustin with 11 kills and Maren Witzel, who had eight kills on .636 hitting, eight digs and two block solos in a 15-4, 15-1, 15-11 win over Eastern Kentucky. Junior setter Vicki Basil got the start and answered with 40 assists, two kills, two service aces and five digs. Jessica Sanborn also had a strong match with nine kiills and four digs. The Spartans hit .323, including .600 in game two, to EKU’s .040 and outblocked the Colonels 6-1.

Courtney Bowen had seven kills and a match-high nine digs for Eastern Kentucky while Becky Galati added eight kills, seven digs and two service aces.

No. 16 Texas A&M 3, Cleveland State 0 Amber Woolsey collected 15 kills, seven digs and four blocks to lead the Aggies to a 15-6, 15-8, 15-4 victory over Cleveland State. Celia Howes and Summer Strickland added seven kills each and combined for 16 digs in the win. Backup setter Claire Harvey hit .500 on four kills to go with 16 assists, three digs and two blocks. As a team the Aggies outhit the Vikings .265-.071 and outblocked them 14-5.

CSU was led by Stacy Melaragno with 10 kills and three blocks while setter Erinn Kingman added 28 assists and a match-high 14 digs.

Clemson 3, No. 22 Michigan State 0 Cindy Stern led all hitters with 16 kills on .481 hitting to lead Clemson to a 15-3, 15-11, 15-7 defeat over No. 22 Michigan State in the deciding match of the tournament. Alison Coday added 15 kills and eight digs, while Jodi Steffes had 10 kills and seven digs in the win. The Tigers outhit MSU .404-.129 and ended with a huge advantage in kills at 52-35.

For the Spartans, Sarah Gustin tallied 14 kills while Jessica Sanborn had nine kills, 10 digs and three blocks. Maren Witzel also contributed with seven kills and two digs.

Results from Friday, Sept. 3

No. 22 Michigan State 3, Cleveland State 0 The Classic began on Friday morning as host Michigan State squared off with Cleveland State. The Spartans, led by redshirt freshman Angela Morley, who had 17 kills (.682) and six blocks in her collegiate debut beat the Vikings 15-6, 15-11, 15-3. Junior middle Jessica Sanborn set a career best with 12 kills while junior outside hitter Sarah Gustin contributed nine kills, 12 digs and three blocks. Junio setter Christie Landry also had 34 assists, six kills, seven digs and three blocks in the win. The Spartans hit .379 as a team and outblocked CSU 12-3.

Cleveland State was led by junior middle Michele Smith, who had 16 kills and hit .343 in the match. Junior outside hitter Molly Hoying and senior middle Stacy Melaragno each tallied 10 kills and 13 digs as the Vikings hit .145 for the match.

Clemson 3, No. 16 Texas A&M 0 Sixteenth-ranked Texas A&M met Clemson, which received votes in the AVCA preseason poll, in the second match of the L&L Classic. Clemson defeated the Aggies 15-7, 15-3, 15-9 in each teams’ season-opener.

Senior outside hitter Emily Gorla racked up 13 kills (.308), 17 digs and three blocks for the Tigers. Alison Coday, a senior outside hitter, added 13 kills and nine digs, while senior middle Cindy Stern had 11 kills on .476 hitting and added nine digs and four blocks. Setter Jessi Betcher, making her collegiate debut, tallied 49 assists and 13 digs in the Clemson victory as the Tigers hit .295 as a team and outblocked the Aggies 13-8.

Texas A&M was led by senior middle Amber Woolsey who had 14 kills, 12 digs and five blocks in the losing effort. Senior outside hitter Celia Howes also recorded a double-double with 12 kills and 10 blocks. The Aggies hit .121 as a team.

Cleveland State 3, Eastern Kentucky 0 Cleveland State bounced back from its earlier loss to blank Eastern Kentucky 15-3, 15-8, 15-4. The Vikings were paced by Stacy Melaragno with 10 kills while senior defensive specialist Nikki Tate tied the Jenison Field House record with seven service aces, including three in game one. As a team, CSU hit .348 and recorded 13 service aces.

Freshman outside hitter Becky Galati led the Colonels of EKU with five kills. Sophomore defensive specialist Jennifer Seretti added two kills and a team-high seven digs as EKU hit just .067. The Colonels did outblock CSU, 4-2.

Clemson 3, Eastern Kentucky 0 Clemson won its second L&L match in the nightcap with a 15-6, 15-2, 15-7 win over Eastern Kentucky. Alison Coday led the Tigers with 16 kills on .400 hitting to go with three blocks and four digs. Senior middle Cindy Stern added 1 kills, while junior outside hitter Heidi Cooper led the team with 10 digs. Clemson hit .300 and outblocked EKU 7-2. Junior Melissa Kudelka dished 19 assists in the match to go with four digs and two blocks.

The Colonels were led by Becky Galati with eight kills and 11 digs, a match high. Sharon Moreno added six kills and 11 assists. EKU hit .093 with two team blocks.

No. 16 Texas A&M 3, No. 22 Michigan State 2 Texas A&M used 20 kills from Amber Woolsey and 12 kills and 20 digs from Celia Howes to defeat Michigan State 12-15, 15-5, 9-15, 15-3, 15-10 on Friday evening. The Aggies hit .222 to MSU’s .137 and outblocked the Spartans 16-10. Texas A&M also racked up eight service aces. Setter Jenna Moscovic was the deciding factor on many of the Aggies’ points, ending the match with nine kills on .467 hitting, 47 assists, seven digs and three blocks.

MSU was led by 15 kills, 12 digs and six blocks by Jessica Sanborn and 14 kills and seven digs by Sarah Gustin. Setter Christie Landry added 41 assists, six kills and 12 digs.

Friday, Sept. 3

Cleveland State    6   11    3Michigan State    15   15   15

Clemson 15 15 15 Texas A&M 7 13 9 Cleveland State 15 15 15 Eastern Kentucky 3 8 4

* Cleveland State’s Nikki Tate (10) ties the Jenison Field House record with 7 service aces.

Eastern Kentucky   6    2    7Clemson           15   15   15

Texas A&M 12 15 9 15 15 Michigan State 15 5 15 3 10

Saturday, Sept. 4

Eastern Kentucky   6    0    2Texas A&M         15   15   15

Cleveland State 0 6 8 Clemson 15 15 15

Michigan State 15 15 15 Eastern Kentucky 4 1 11

Texas A&M 15 15 15 Cleveland State 6 8 4

Clemson 15 15 15 Michigan State 3 11 7