SIOUX CITY, IOWA -- The winningest season ever compiled by University of Jamestown women's volleyball came to a close in the semifinals of the NAIA national tournament here on Saturday.
The eighth-ranked Jimmies fell 3-1 to 11th-ranked Marian University (Indiana) at the Tyson Events Center, closing Jamestown's memorable season with a Great Plains Athletic Conference tournament championship and a program-record 33 match victories.
The Marian Knights are moving on to tonight's national championship against Westmont (California) at 7 p.m., winning 25-16, 18-25, 25-20, 25-20. Westmont, a team UJ defeated 3-1 in championship pool play on Wednesday, swept Viterbo (Wisconsin) 25-9, 25-22, 25-20 in Saturday's second national semifinal.
The volleyball careers of UJ seniors Britta Knudson, Isabel Wedell, Jordan Thomas and Miranda Lowman, along with junior Ellie Michaletz, came to a close with the loss. Michaletz is graduating from UJ a year-and a-half early later this month.
Jimmie volleyball was making the university's first appearance in an NAIA national championship semifinal, defeating 2017 national champion Lindsey Wilson (Kentucky) and 2015 national champion Columbia (Missouri) in the process.
Knudson will lead the NAIA in 2019 with 184 blocks, second-most in program history for a single season. Knudson's .345 attacking percentage on the season is seventh-best by a Jimmie.
UJ junior libero Sydney Ellingson recorded the sixth-most digs by a Jimmie in a single season with 663.
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(11) Marian University (Indiana) 3, (8) University of Jamestown 1
MU 25 18 25 25
UJ 16 25 20 20
MU -- Kills: Jai-Lyn Norwood 16, Sarah Spangler 14, Brooke Hustedde 11, Skyler Van Note 10, Madi Heffron 5, Anne Strevels 5, Lexi Spence. Assists: Spence 27, Heffron 24, Megan Hawley 3, Van Note 2, Maddie Keerns 2, Maggie Meyer. Aces: Van Note, Meyer. Digs: Hawley 30, Van Note 22, Keersn 13, Meyer 11, Spene 11, Hustedde 7, Norwood 4, Heffron 3, Spangler 2, Strevels 2. Blocks: Norwood 3, Strevels 2, Van Note.
UJ -- Kills: Isabel Wedell 14, Taylor Sabinash 13, Corina Ruud 5, Britta Knudson 6, Anna Holen 5, Jordan Thomas 3, Miranda Lowman 2, Ellie Michaletz 2. Assists: Lowman 22, Jackie Meiklejohn 20, Holen 2, Hannah Schiele, Sydney Ellingson, Ruud, Meiklejohn. Aces: Lowman, Schiele. Digs: Ellingson 24, Holen 22, Schiele 20, Lowman 17, Meiklejohn 12, Wedell 3, Sabinash 2, Thomas. Blocks: Ruud 2, Thomas 1.5, Knudson 1.5, Michaletz 1 Wedell 1, Sabinash 1.
Records: Marian 37-2. Jamestown 33-6.