KINGSPORT, Tenn. (Nov. 16, 2019) – After qualifying for a spot in the NAIA Women's Volleyball National Championship, the Milligan College volleyball team fell to No. 25 Reinhardt in the Appalachian Athletic Conference tournament championship. The Buffs lost in three sets (27-25, 25-13, 25-16) to the regular season AAC champions.
The Buffs and the Eagles battled it out past regulation ending score to determine a winner in the first set. Reinhardt began the game by going on a 6-0 run before a kill by Carley Gregory put the Buffs on the board. Milligan battled back to make the score 15-15 and took the lead all the way up to the score being 25-24. Reinhardt was then able to tie the score up 25-25 then take the lead from back to back errors by Milligan. A kill by Courtney Pressley gave Reinhardt the winning point in the first set.
Milligan stayed tied up with Reinhardt in the second set before the Eagles went on a 12-2 run to make the score 19-11. Back to back attack errors by Milligan started the Eagles rally. Reinhardt had 15 kills in the second set compared to Milligan's eight.
The third set was all Reinhardt with Milligan never gaining the lead once. Reinhardt went on a 12-3 run to make the score 17-7 and the Eagles were able to carry that momentum all the way to the end of the set.
Geren and Julie Dockery made the all-tournament team. Dockery led the tournament with a .377 hitting percentage with 25 kills out of 53 attempts with five errors. Geren had 107 assists averaging 10.7 a set.
Up next the Buffs will find out who their opening round opponent is when the NAIA reveals the 44 team field for the 40th annual Women's Volleyball National Championship Monday, Nov. 18, at 11 a.m. The announcement will be streamed live on the NAIA Facebook page. The opening round will be held on Nov. 23 at various host sites.
Last year, the Buffs qualified for the national championship for the first time since 1996. They defeated Cornerstone in the opening round to move on to the final site of the national tournament.