Army Takes Black Knights Invitational With Two Wins

WEST POINT – The Army West Point volleyball team won both of its matches on Saturday to claim a sweep of the Black Knights Invitational at Gillis Field House.

With wins over Kent State and Bryant, Army (6-3) remains undefeated at home this season with all six of its wins recorded at West Point.

Senior Sydney Morriss was named the tournament’s Most Valuable Player after recording 33 kills across the team’s three matches. Morriss was instrumental in Army’s third set comeback against Binghamton on Friday in which they fought back from a 17-9 deficit.

Another high note in the tournament was the team’s defensive corps led by Ana Oglivie and Sayler Butters.

“Those two are one of the most dynamic duos in the country in terms of defense,” head coach Alma Kovaci Lee said. “They are very good and even today where I changed their positions, they still performed like there was no change at all. Their defense is making our offense work, so I can’t say enough about what those two are doing for us.”

The day started with a strongly contested matchup against Kent State where neither team led by more than three through the first two sets. Army fought through the first two frames 25-23 and 25-22 before dropping the third set. The Cadets closed out the match with a strong 25-16 fourth set.

Courtney Horace (15), Morriss (12) and Emmy Barnhorst (12) each posted double-digit kills. Hannah Presley (22) and Nikki Lum (20) each hit the 20-assist mark.

The Cadets came out swinging in their second match against Bryant, jumping out to the lead with a 25-14 advantage in the first set. Bryant fended off six set points in the second set before Army was able to close the door with a 25-23 game. They carried that momentum into the third set to take the match and clinch a sweep of the tournament.

Horace was the lone member of the team with double-digit kills with10 finishers. In her first start as libero, freshman Butters recorded 15 digs en route to being named to the All-Tournament team.

The Black Knights will compete in one more tournament before Patriot League play begins as they head to Yale for the Bulldogs Invitational in New Haven, Conn., next weekend.

Army – #22 Sydney Morriss (MVP), #4 Sayler Butters
Binghamton – #3 Kiara Adams
Bryant – #7 Maya Popernik, #9 Alisi Motu’apuaka
Kent State – #15 Kiara Matthews

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