Christendom College took 2nd at the USCAA DII Volleyball National Championship in Virginia Beach this past weekend, fighting all the way to the final before falling to Johnson & Wales University.
The Lady Crusaders earned their first National Championship playoffs berth this year, after a regular season that saw them ranked as high as #2 in the nation. While they fell in their first game of pool play on Thursday to Johnson & Wales, the Lady Crusaders came from behind in their second match against Penn State Du Bois to earn a trip to the semifinal round on Friday.
The semifinal match brought the Lady Crusaders up against #1 ranked University of Cincinnati Clermont, but the Lady Crusaders got on a roll early, quickly jumping to a 2-0 lead in sets. Clermont refused to go down without a fight, however, winning the third set and eventually the second as well, forcing a sudden death 5th set. The Lady Crusaders fell behind 9-13 late in the set, but fought back, scoring again and again until they tied the set at 13-13. The killer combo of Michaela Pennefather and Gemma McMahon led the way from there, scoring another two points to win the match and send Christendom to the National Championship final.
The final brought them up against Johnson & Wales once more on Saturday, who had yet to lose a set the entire weekend. The Lady Crusaders gave their all, but ultimately fell in straight sets to Johnson & Wales, finishing in 2nd for the National Championship.
Despite falling in the final, the 2nd place finish still gives the Lady Crusaders the best season in program history. Celina Albisu and Gemma McMahon were both also named to the All-Tournament team — another honor in a season full of them.