Penner Lands 22 Kills as Zags Fall in Five
Nov. 18, 2017
MORAGA, Calif.--Freshman outside hitter Sarah Penner saw career highs with 22 kills and a .462 attack percentage Saturday afternoon, but it wasn't enough as the Gonzaga volleyball team fell in five sets (20-25, 25-12, 25-22, 16-25, 15-11) at McKeon Pavilion in Moraga.
Fourteen of Penner's kills came during sets three and four, eight alone in the fourth. In that fourth set, the Sherwood, Ore., native tallied four straight kills, turning a 12-12 tie into a 12-16 lead for the Bulldogs. They went onto take the fourth set 16-25, but the Gaels used a 7-1 run in the beginning of the fifth to claim match victory.
Penner's 22 kills were the most by a Bulldog this season, and her .462 average was the third-highest in a 12-kill effort. She entered the weekend second amongst West Coast Conference freshmen in kills and now stands at 266 on the season. That is the most by a GU freshman since Savannah Blinn's 287 in 2012.
"Sarah found every part of the court today," said Gonzaga head coach Diane Nelson. "She came in aggressive on every ball."
As a team, the Zags landed more kills (58-55) and tallied more digs (76-64) than the Gaels, but Saint Mary's out-served GU seven aces to three and out-blocked the Zags 13.0-6.0. Junior Tiyana Hallums led Gonzaga with 21 digs, her fifth match of the year at or above 20. Fellow junior Faith Smith added a double-double, pairing 23 assists and 14 digs.
Sophomore Jenna Kuehn also had a solid performance Saturday, posting 19 assists, eight digs, six kills, and a .400 attack percentage.
The Zags (13-16 overall, 8-9 WCC) will wrap up the season on Monday, Nov. 20, with a home match against Portland. That contest will begin at 4:00 p.m. inside the Martin Centre. Before the match, redshirt senior Alyse Whitaker will be honored as the Zags' lone senior on Senior Day.
11/20/2017 - Zags End Season with Senior Day Win
11/18/2017 - Penner Lands 22 Kills as Zags Fall in Five
11/16/2017 - Tough Night Offensively Hands VB Loss in Stockton
11/15/2017 - Zags to End Regular Season with Long Weekend
11/14/2017 - Two NLI Signees for Volleyball
11/11/2017 - VB Falls to No. 12 San Diego
11/09/2017 - VB Falls to Ninth-ranked BYU