Women’s Club Volleyball heads to Kansas City for Nationals



Meaghan Bedigian

Another Villanova Club Sport is dominating at the National level. 

The Women’s Club Volleyball team is sending nine of its 20 members to Kansas City, Mo. over Easter break to compete in Club Volleyball nationals from April 13-15.

The nine players include senior captains Mary Platt and Katherine Gowland, junior Kristen Ryan, sophomores Corina Scott and Maeve Kenny and freshmen Carolyn Shanks, Alley Keresztesy, Elizabeth Wojtowicz and Libby Gold.

Ryan, Club Volleyball President, has only positive things to say about captains middle hitter Platt and outside hitter Gowland for their athleticism and ability to lead by example.

“Mary is a player who is always composed on and off the court, represents the team very well and makes the rest of the team feel comfortable on the court even when the outcome is not what we had hoped for,” Ryan said. “Katherine is a passionate leader and player whose positivity and love of the game is contagious.”

The two leaders find a good balance between having fun and focusing, according to Ryan.

Scott and Shanks are the team’s setters.

“Corina is an extremely smart setter who is able to run a dangerous offense in any scenario while Carolyn has proven herself as a versatile player,” Ryan said.

The rest of the team’s offense is made up of the class of 2020 and includes middle hitter Keresztesy, opposite hitter Wojtowicz and outside hitter Gold.

“Alley is a player who is full of surprises,” Ryan said. “She is a strong hitter and smart with her hits and is also surprisingly efficient on defense. Elizabeth is a powerful and always brings positive energy to the court, which is especially important when facing tough competition. Libby is a very talented and consistently plays smart, is efficient in serve/receive and is always working to improve her game.”

The team practices twice a week in Jake Nevin and Alumni Hall, depending on gym availability.

They also compete in four tournaments each semester and travel anywhere from Philadelphia to Syracuse during the regular season.

In any given season, about 15 players are travel players who compete in tournaments while the rest are practice players.

Any team can register for Club Volleyball Nationals, but ranking depends on how each team performs during the regular season, according to Ryan. Teams from Division 1 schools are typically split up by school size into D1, D1A, D1AA and D1AAA brackets depending on the size of their school.

“This is the second time in the past three years that our team will be attending, and we are all very excited,” Ryan said. “Although our school size would place us in D1AAA, our regular season record has allowed us to compete at a higher level in D1AA.”

Ryan’s off-court duties consist of registration, paperwork and coordinating travel plans for tournaments, including planning a Nationals fundraiser at the Chipotle in Wayne, Pa. 

“Our fundraiser at Chipotle was very successful,” Ryan said. “We love doing restaurant fundraisers because it gives us all an excuse to go to team dinner. It also works out well for everyone involved because Chipotle got some extra business and everyone who supported us got a dinner out of it too.”

On the court, Ryan is a defensive specialist and, along with Kenny make up the team’s defensive line.

“Maeve and I are both dedicated defensive players who will do anything to make sure a ball doesn’t hit the floor and always try to motivate others to play to the best of their ability,” Ryan said.