By Cameron Stubbs
The Youngstown State University volleyball team faced off against two local rivals as it traveled to the University of Akron and then faced off against Kent State University at home.
Against the Zips, the Penguins accomplished a 3-0 set sweep for the second time in matchup history.
Sophomore Paula Gursching led the Penguins to their third straight win with 21 kills. Those 21 kills is the most in a three-set match for YSU since Ebony Barbosa in 2006.
Freshman Abbie Householder recorded her second career double-double with 12 kills and 15 digs. Senior Josi Borum contributed with five kills and 20 assists.
This was the Penguin’s third win in a row and sixth for the season, which matches the win total from last year.
Head coach Aline Scott is proud of the team and its early success as she stated in an interview.
“Overall, I feel that this non-conference season was really productive for us,” Scott stated, “I’m happy with the team we’ve become.”
Next, against the Golden Flashes, the Penguins fell in five sets.
Gursching and Householder both finished with double-doubles as Gursching led the way again with a match-high 24 kills.
Borum contributed with her second triple-double of the season and the third of her career, with 10 kills, 28 assists and 10 digs.
The loss ended the win streak, as well as non-conference play, but Gursrching is excited for what is to come in the Horizon League.
“It’s so amazing how much we’ve changed from last year,” Gursching said, “It’s so much fun to play with this team … we are really prepared [for conference play]. I think we’ll be really good, I expect a lot.”
The Penguins started conference play facing off against Cleveland State University, falling to the Vikings in five sets.
Gursching continued to dominate as she spiked down 25 kills and earned 24 digs. This was the second 20-20 game by a Penguin in the past 15 years.
Borum posted another triple-double with 11 kills, 29 assists and 12 digs. Householder added 29 digs and sophomore Isabel Schaefbauer also contributed with 24 digs and 27 assists.
Up next the Penguins travel to Wisconsin to take on the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee in the Klotsche Center & Pavilion Friday, Sept. 24.
Catch this match on ESPN+ or follow along on ysusports.com