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No. 10 Georgia Tech Stifles Irish

THE FLATS – No. 10 Georgia Tech volleyball (21-3, 12-2 ACC) dominated its Sunday afternoon match against Notre Dame (10-12, 4-10 ACC), sweeping the Irish (25-16, 25-15, 15-14) inside O’Keefe Gymnasium. The Jackets held Notre Dame to just .020 hitting as a team, the lowest opponent hitting percentage in a match this season and the best defensive display, statistically, in over a calendar year.

QUICK HITS

  • Georgia Tech now leads the all-time series with Notre Dame, 9-6, winning consecutive matches over the Irish for the first time since the 2016-17 seasons.
  • The Jackets have won 12 of their first 14 ACC matches, tied for the best start to a conference season in the Michelle Collier era (2021).
  • This is the 26th consecutive sellout at O’Keefe Gymnasium dating back to the 2021 season.
  • Going beyond 2019’s NIVC title, Tech has won 100 of its last 123 matches (.813 winning pct.).
  • Georgia Tech’s defense held the Irish to .020 hitting today, the lowest hitting percentage by a Tech opponent this season and the lowest since holding Boston College to .000 on October 21, 2022.
  • Junior outside hitter Bianca Bertolino led the defense with 13 digs for an average of 4.33 digs/set – a new season-best in conference play.
  • She added in 10 kills for her ninth double-double of the season and 23rd of her career.
  • Senior libero Paola Pimentel recorded 12 digs. She has recorded double digit digs in 23 of her 24 matches this season.
  • Pimentel now holds 399 digs this season, one shy of becoming just the sixth Jacket in the modern scoring era (since 2008) to reach 400 digs in a single season.
  • The Brazilian libero registered two kills in the opening set off of digs that went over the net. They were her first two kills of the season and the 7th and 8th of her career. She is averaging one kill for every 140 digs over her career.
  • Senior outside hitter Tamara Otene led the team with 16 kills today, including an amazing 8 kills in the third set.
  • Otene set a new season-best by collecting her 16 kills on .448 hitting, her most efficient scoring performance since playing at Clemson last season (.471 on 11/18/22).
  • Otene has reached the 300-kill mark for the first time as a Jacket. She now owns 526 kills in her 52 matches in White and Gold.
  • Graduate right side Afedo Manyang tied a season-best with four blocks – the 1.33 blocks/set average is her best as a Jacket.
  • Middle blockers DeAndra Pierce and Anna Boezi combined for nine kills on .533 hitting – bringing their weekend total to a combined 26 kills (13 each) on .456 hitting with both averaging 1.00 block/set.
  • Senior Bella D’Amico (17) combined with freshman Heloise Soares (19) for 36 assists as Tech stayed in its 6-2 system.

VB vs Notre Dame

Set By Set

Set 1 (GT, 25-16): The Jackets got off to a strong start, winning the first three points of the match before a strong run of serve from Otene grew the Tech lead to five, 9-4. Notre Dam managed to cut the lead to two, 11-9, but a string of good serves from D’Amico kept the lead safely on the Tech side of the net. Bertolino took care of the load on offense, finishing the set with five kills on .714 hitting to help Tech take the set by nine. Pimentel brought the home crowd to its feet with a pair of kills in the set, including one directly following one of her team-leading five digs in the set. Tech’s serving was elite throughout the set, forcing Notre Dame out of system on just about every serve. The Irish ended the set with an abysmal 37% sideout percentage.

Set 2 (GT, 25-15): Notre Dame showed some fight in the start of the second set, keeping the score close, 10-9. But from there, the Jackets dominated play, winning 15 of the final 21 points, including a late 5-0 run off the serve of Otene, to give Tech set point, 24-13. The Jackets would win the set three points later off a block rom Pierce and Manyang. That final block put Notre Dame into a negative hitting percentage for the set (-.026). Otene woke up offensively in the second, making six kills on 10 swings while Bertolino added in four of her own. Bertolino made a team-best five digs in the set, doing most of her defensive damage after serving.

Set 3 (GT, 25-14): Once again, the outcome of the third set was in doubt early on. The Irish took an early 3-1 lead and had the match tied as late as 13-13. But an incredible service run from Soares, along with an otherworldly string of attacks from Otene, sent the Jackets on a 12-1 scoring run that could only be stopped by the end of the match. Tech’s scoring run completely flipped the feeling of the final set as the Jackets out-hit Notre Dame .429 to .000. Otene made eight kills on .533 hitting, while Pierce rattled off four of her own on .667 hitting while teaming up with Manyang for a pair of blocks. Bertolino and Pimentel led the back row, making five digs each as the Jacket defense delivered an amazing 19 digs to close out the 21st win of the season.

UP NEXT
Georgia Tech has a chance to solidify its place at the top of the ACC next week when the Jackets host No. 6 Pitt (21-4, 12-2 ACC) inside O’Keefe Gymnasium, Friday at 5 p.m. The match will be broadcast on ACC Network.

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