*PRINT ONLY* Volleyball tournament

Headline: GV falls to Ferris in championship match

Subhead: Rehm, Bulldogs win GLIAC Tournament in Allendale

By Jay Bushen

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Senior outside hitter Courtney Rehm smacked home the game-winning kill, followed it up with a celebratory stomp and slapped the GV logo with both hands. It was an emotional victory.

Rehm recorded 10 digs and a match-high 17 kills as the No. 18 Ferris State volleyball team defeated No. 16 Grand Valley State in four sets (25-13, 23-25, 25-22, 25-22) at Fieldhouse Arena on Sunday for its first GLIAC Tournament championship in 10 years.

“We just had a mindset of wanting to win,” said Rehm, who was named the GLIAC Tournament MVP after the match. “Grand Valley is always an amazing opponent. We just persevered.

“We knew they were going to come out strong, so we just tried to fight that as much as we could and did our best and worry about our side – we know they have great players up and down the board.”

GVSU and Ferris State shared the regular season championship with matching 17-1 records in conference play. Both teams swept their way to the tournament championship, and the highly anticipated title bout match was an entertaining one.

The only exception was the first set.

Ferris State made a statement in the opening frame by racing out to a 12-2 lead it would not relinquish. The Bulldogs were impressive defensively as they limited the Lakers to a .023 hitting percentage.

The attack improved in a second set characterized by 13 tie scores and six lead changes. GVSU junior Kaleigh Lound led the way with a trio of kills before Kourtney Wolters sealed it with a set-winning kill.

The Lakers would not lead again, however, as the Bulldogs refused to let GVSU’s outside hitters beat them. The outside hitters combined to rack up 18 kills, but their 21 errors translated into a -.026 hitting percentage.

“I feel there were just people that didn’t show up to play and perform,” said GVSU coach Deanne Scanlon. “Basically our outside hitter positions were not only not productive, they were terminal, fatal to our effort tonight.

“Our middles played a good game offensively and Kourtney (Wolters) did a great job playing defense but we have to find an answer for our outsides. They’re too much of an important part of what we do.”

GVSU’s middle blockers were able to capitalize, and made a number of big plays in the losing effort. Lound, who finished with a team-high 14 kills, combined with Ally Simmons and Sydney Doby to hit .423 in the match.

GVSU senior Kaitlyn Wolters, who was tabbed as the GLIAC Volleyball Player of the Year and GLIAC Setter of the Year on Saturday, racked up 42 assists and seven kills while senior Christina Canepa, the GLIAC Libero of the Year, recorded 17 kills.

Canepa said the team will have to refocus this week.

“It’s frustrating but it’s really important that we don’t get too down because we have another tournament to play in,” Canepa said of the NCAA Tournament. “Tonight, it’s pretty obvious that they were the better team. They deserve to win. And now we can use this loss to come in and be prepared for next week.”

The Lakers and Bulldogs figure to be two of the higher-seeded teams in the regional tournament, which begins this week.