Oct. 19, 2007
ATLANTA – Chrissy DeMichelis posted a career-high 22 kills and Allie Niekamp notched her fourth double-double of the season to power Georgia Tech past Maryland, 3-2 (30-21, 22-30, 30-24, 28-30, 15-10) Friday night at O’Keefe Gym. With the victory, the Yellow Jackets held on to fourth place in the conference standings with a 6-4 ACC record while standing 12-8 on the season, and Maryland dropped to 13-7, 5-6 ACC heading into Saturday’s match at Clemson.
“It was a much needed victory for our team,” head coach Bond Shymansky said. “We fought back through some mental lapses in our serving and really executed flawlessly in game five between great passing and aggressive swings.
“Maryland is a very good blocking team, which makes it challenging to hit with high efficiency, but I really liked the terminal hitting that we got from our left side hitters, especially Chrissy DeMichelis who is flourishing as a rising star in our program.”
Niekamp recorded her fourth-straight match with 50 or more assists, posting 53 against the Terrapins in addition to tying a career-high with 17 digs on the night. Michelle Kandell and Jordan McCullers also posted 17 digs on a night when Tech recorded 74 as a team, which raised more than $2,000 for the Susan G. Komen for the Cure Foundation.
The Jackets were participating in the annual Dig for the Cure match, and have now averaged 77 digs in their two years of participating in the event, which raises awareness and funds to fight the cause of breast cancer.
“Most of all I’m proud of our defense tonight, which was anchored by Kandell, McCullers and Niekamp,” Shymansky added. “They were inspired not only to raise awareness, but also to raise money to fight breast cancer on our Dig for the Cure match.
With the match tied at 2-2 heading into game five, the Jackets jumped out to an early lead, scoring six of the first eight points before polishing off the match with a 15-10 win in the final frame. Ulrike Stegemann, a native of Schwerin, Germany that was playing in front of her parents for the first time since arriving on campus in 2004, led the Jackets to the win by recording three kills on four attempts (.750) while Callie Miller posted a pair of block assists in the game. DeMichelis finished off the match with her 22nd kill on match point.
Stegemann and junior captain Talisa Kellogg finished with 13 kills in the match. The Terps were led by Mary Beth Brown and Beth Gilming, who combined for 29 kills on the night.
Georgia Tech closed out the opening game on an 8-4 run and held the Terps from scoring back-to-back points during that span to win, 30-21. The Jackets hit .333 to Maryland’s .167 and posted 17 digs in the frame. Chrissy DeMichelis led Tech’s offense, hitting .400 with seven kills and just one error on 15 attempts.
The Terrapins jumped out to an early edge in game two by using a 7-0 run to take an 11-3 lead. Maryland cruised to a 30-22 win by hitting .394 and notching 14 digs in the frame. Mary Beth Brown led all players with six kills while hitting .667, while the Jackets, as a team, hit just .139 in the game.
The Jackets took a 2-1 lead in the match with a 30-24 victory in game three. Tech finished off the game on a 6-1 run, which included a trio of kills by DeMichelis and a pair of errors by the Terps.
Trailing 26-19 in game four, the Yellow Jackets climbed back to within one point at 29-28, but the Terps’ blocking was too much, as Maryland closed out the game and tied the match on a block by Michelle Kenning and Meredith Doyle to win, 30-28. The Terrapins totaled six blocks in the frame to match the Jackets’ total for the match, while Maryland pushed its total to 17.
Tech will conclude the weekend with a match against Boston College Saturday at 7 p.m. at O’Keefe Gym. The match can be heard on WREK Radio (91.1 FM in Atlanta/www.wrek.org) while live stats can be found at RamblinWreck.com.