No thanks to the remnants of Hurricane Sandy, the Pennsylvania College of Technology women’s volleyball team will have to wait for its shot at winning this season’s Penn State University Athletic Conference championship.
Its title match against Penn State Fayette, scheduled for Monday at Penn State’s Rec Hall, was postponed and now is on hold until after this weekend’s United States Collegiate Athletic Association National Championships.
USCAA pool play begins Friday at the State University of New York at Canton, N.Y. In Pool A, Penn College (23-7 overall) will face Daemen College at 1 p.m. and UC Clermont at 3:45 p.m. at SUNY Canton.
Pool play continues Saturday with the Wildcats facing Carlow University at 11:30 a.m. and SUNY Canton at 2:30 p.m. The last pool-play matchups will conclude by 4 p.m. and teams will be reseeded. Quarterfinal games are scheduled to be played at 4 and 5:30 p.m. Semifinals will be staged Sunday at 10 a.m. and noon. The third-place game is set for 2 p.m., immediately preceding the championship match at 4 p.m. Penn State Fayette is also competing in the national tourney, in Pool B.
“From the sounds of the matchups in our pool for the USCAA, we may be the No. 10 seed, but we have a fair shot and a fun opportunity to surprise a couple of the higher-seeded teams,” Penn College coach Bambi Hawkins said. “Obviously, having the No. 1 seed Daemen as our opener will be a tough start to the tournament, but I don’t mind if we show our best play right off.”
According to Hawkins, Tara Powell, of Burgettstown; Courtney Gernert, of Palmyra; and Caitlyn Curley, of Middletown, were voted to First Team in the PSUAC while Kelly Hebert, of Wellsboro, was voted to the second team.
“Melissa Lake, of Winburne, showed why she should be in that mix, as well, especially in our semifinal match against Penn State Brandywine as she made some crowd-awakening kills and blocks at the net,” Hawkins said.
“Every player on the squad has an essential role and I am praying they will recognize what their contribution is and how they are a part of a great team,” the coach added.
Penn College got its first taste of USCAA play a year ago and went 0-4 in the tournament. It is looking for a better outcome this season.
Going into this season, Hawkins’ 13th, Penn College teams had won 161 matches and lost 102. They went 21-2 and won the CCAC championship in 2004. The following year, the CCAC became the PSUAC and the Wildcats reached the playoffs each season, finishing second in 2005, 2006, 2007 and 2011.