As 2017 winds down, VolleyMob is taking a look back at the past year in volleyball with a month by month recap of the year that was. College volleyball stole the show in September with a schedule affected by hurricanes, impacted by major injuries and highlighted by milestone wins and upsets. The World Grand Champions Cup, AVP Championship and much more also dotted the volleyball landscape.
- Widely considered the best Puerto Rican volleyball player of all time, Hector Soto announced his retirement, wrapping up a 22-year career, including stints with 15 clubs and with the Puerto Rican national team.
- Olympic gold medalist Wei Qiuyue retired after leading the Chinese national team to gold in Rio and at the 2015 FIVB World Cup. The captain cited injuries for closing her career at age 28.
- In the first Top 5 showdown of the season, No. 5 Penn State bested No. 1 Stanford in four sets behind a triple double by setter Abby Detering. Just one week later, the Nittany Lions rallied for a five-set win over the Cardinal with 20 kill efforts by Simone Lee and Ali Frantti.
- No. 17 USC knocked off No. 6 Creighton in a surprising sweep in Omaha as Khalia Lanier notched 23 kills.
- The European Men’s Championship culminated with Russia edging past Germany in five sets for the gold. It marked Russia’s first title since 2013 and 14th overall. Serbia rounded out the podium with the bronze, topping Serbia in five sets. Russia’s Maxim Mikhailov was named tournament MVP. headlining the Dream Team.
- No. 12 seed Kelly Claes and Sara Hughes became the youngest pair ever to win an AVP event, taking the Chicago Open title for the AVP Championship. The duo, which turned pro after graduating from USC in May, bested Summer Ross and Brooke Sweat in the finals. On the men’s side, John Hyden and Ryan Doherty were crowned AVP champs, topping 2016 champions Phil Dalhauser and Nick Lucena for the title.
- Michigan State coach Cathy George earned her 600th career victory as the Spartans swept San Diego State. The milestone win placed her 22nd nationally in Division I and third in the Big Ten. Nebraska coach John Cook registered his 500th win with the Huskers as the team swept Maryland-Baltimore County in a sweep.
- Phil Dalhausser was named the Most Outstanding Player on the men’s FIVB Tour. Germany’s Laura Ludwig garnered the accolade on the women’s side.
- China clinched the Women’s World Grand Champions Cup title with a perfect 4-0 mark. Brazil upset Team USA for the silver. China’s Zhu Ting led all scorers with 100 points en route to MVP honors.
- Wingate coach Shelton Collier reached the 1,000-win plateau as his team topped North Greenville. The victory made Collier just the ninth coach ever to reach 1,000 wins in NCAA history.
- Several collegiate schedules were altered due to Hurricane Irma and Hurricane Harvey, including undefeated Miami (Fla.). / Florida International and Miami were halted for a second-straight week as well. prompting the NCAA to discuss potential implications of missed matches.
- In the first of several injuries that plagued the Terrapins, Maryland freshman captain Katie Myers went down with a season-ending knee injury.
- Iowa State downed No. 7 Creighton, who was without setter Lydia Dimke due to injury.
- Brazil won the men’s World Grand Champions Cup, while the United States was kept off the podium with a four-set loss to Italy. Ricardo Lucarelli grabbed MVP honors.
- Turkey ended Slovenia’s Cinderella run through the Women’s U23 World Championships in the gold medal match, besting the Slovenian side in four sets for their first ever U23 title. Hande Baladin was named MVP of the tournament, tallying 91 points in seven matches.
- Six ranked teams lost to unranked foes on Week 4, including Maryland topping No. 15 USC, Santa Clara upsetting No. 8 Kansas and Colorado defeating No. 11 Nebraska. Meanwhile, seven teams remained undefeated after non-conference action.
- Russia’s Mariia Bocharova and Maria Voronina won the CEV U20 Beach Championships, following a gold medal at the U18 European Championships just two weeks prior. On the men’s side, Russians Vasilii Ivanov and Sergey Gorbenko took the U20 crown, marking the first title for the country at the event since 1997.
- Russian women’s national team coach Vladimir Kuzyutkin was fired just before the start of the CEV European Women’s Championships.
- Florida coach Mary Wise notched her 800th win with the Gators as the team topped Northern Kentucky on Sept. 15. She became just the fourth Division I head coach to post more than 800 wins with one school.
- Nebraska bested Penn State via sweep in the Big Ten opener, which marked the return of Briana Holman after an ankle injury.
- Penn State alumna and current U.S. women’s national team member Megan Courtney suffered the second ACL injury of her career, just prior to joining Canakkale in Turkey.
- China, Kazakhstan, Thailand and Korea punched their tickets to the 2018 women’s World Championships by finishing in the top two spots in their respective pools at the AVC Qualifier.
- Missouri State’s Lily Johnson broke the Missouri Valley Conference career record for kills with 1,965.
- The AVP announced that Sinjin Smith, a 92 time league champion, would be added to its Wall of Champions.
- Northern Kentucky recorded the 1,000th win in program history, besting Youngstown State.
Leave a Reply