MONTGOMERY, Ala. - Cinderella is still dancing as Blue Mountain College Volleyball won its first-ever SSAC Championship Saturday at the Cramton Multiplex, defeating No. 1 seed Loyola 3-0 (26-24, 25-23, 25-23) in straight sets.
The outcome was never in doubt, as the Volley Toppers dominated the Wolfpack from whistle to whistle, securing a trip to the NAIA National Championship Tournament November 30 in Sioux City, Iowa.
BMC head coach Reid Gann said after the victory, "I am so proud of what this team accomplished over the last three days. Winning the SSAC Tournament in a third year is unprecedented."
The victory pushed Blue Mountain to a 30-win season, one of only six teams in the nation to hit the mark inside the NAIA.
BMC All-Conference stars Taylor Wright (SR/Huntsville, Ala.), Tori Walker (JR/Florence, Ala.) and Skyler Benson (JR/Priceville, Ala.) led the combined attack at the net for BMC in the finale, with Wright slamming 15 kills, and Benson and Walker with 10 each.
Anna Lucas (JR/Athens, Ala.) put together a double-double for the Toppers, dishing out 38 assists and notching 10 digs. Jaiyah Jackson (FR/Alexander, Ark.) would lead in digs for BMC with 16.
"This is a special team," Gann said. "They have been a dream to coach all year. We are going to enjoy this moment and soon turn our attention to the national tournament."
The conference championship is the first for Blue Mountain in any sport since 2017 when the women's cross country team brought home an SSAC title.
The NAIA volleyball national championship will include a field of 48 teams Nov. 30 - Dec. 4. Forty-eight teams will compete in 24 national championship opening round matches played on campus sites nationwide on November 20th. Opening round winners will advance to the final site for a 24-team pool play tournament. One team from each pool will advance to single-elimination championship play. Brackets will be announced in the coming days.