The 21st-ranked Gannon University volleyball team continued its dominant season over the weekend by sweeping fellow Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference members University of Pittsburgh-Johnstown and Shippensburg at the Hammermill Center to stretch its winning streak to 12 straight.
By weekend’s end, the Knights had run their overall record to 23-1, clinched a spot in the PSAC tournament and won the PSAC Northwest Division with a conference mark of 12-1.
Saturday was Senior Day, and Lexi Johnson was the lone senior recognized in a postgame ceremony that followed the Knights’ 25-17, 25-17, 25-18 victory over Shippensburg
It marked the first time Shippensburg had been swept all season.
Lauren Sampson continued her four-game streak of 10 or more kills with a career-high 16 for the Knights, while Ashley Kerestes led the way with 21 digs.
The Knights, whose only loss on the season came on Sept. 14 to East Stroudsburg, scored seven of the final eight in the first set by way of four kills from Sampson.
An ace from Toni Leitshuh gave Gannon a 13-9 lead midway through the second and kills from Johnson, Ally Smith and Kerestes closed out the set at 25-17.
Late in the third set, a kill from Ashley McClung put the Knights up, 18-11, before Gannon cut off a Shippensburg run to win the match, 25-18.
Gannon had no difficulty in taking care of Pitt-Johnstown Friday, sweeping the visitors, 25-12, 25-22, 25-14, at the Hammermill Center.
The Knights, who collected nine service aces, were led by Sampson’s 14 kills, four digs and five block assists.
Ashley Beyers added two aces and handed out 32 assists on the afternoon.
Gannon scored 12 consecutive points in the first set against UPJ to take a late commanding lead at 20-11.
In set two, the Knights held off a late UPJ run after taking the lead at 20-15. Pitt-Johnstown’s attack errors helped Gannon take the set, 25-22.
The Knights rolled in the third set on their way to a 25-14 victory to end the match.
Up next, Gannon will return to action Friday for a 7 p.m. road match against Lock Haven. The Knights will follow with a noon match at Bloomsburg Saturday before returning to the Hammermill Center to host rival Mercyhurst at 7 p.m. Tuesday.