SAN ANTONIO (Nov. 5, 2019) – The Our Lady of the Lake University (OLLU) volleyball team overcame obstacles this season, including key injuries. Yet, under the helm of first-year Head Coach Scott Mattera, the team triumphed to qualify for its 12th postseason out of 13 years. The only year the Saints did not appear at the conference tournament was in their inaugural 2007 season.
In 13 years, the Saints have won the regular season in the Red River Athletic Conference four consecutive times – 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2018 (co-championship). They have captured the tournament title three times – 2015, 2016 and 2017 – to qualify for the NAIA National Championships. Their last appearance at nationals was in 2017, when the women made it out of the opening round and into the pool play round.
This year, the university hosts the conference tournament for the fourth time (2015, 2016 and 2018). The tournament opens on Nov. 8 with a match between No. 4 University of the Southwest against No. 5 Jarvis Christian College at 10:30 a.m. The No. 3 Saints will play No. 6 Texas College next at 1 p.m.
With a win in the opening round, the Saints advance to the tournament semifinals to play No. 2 Wiley at 7 p.m. The winner of the Southwest and Jarvis match will precede the Saints match at 4:30 p.m.
The winners of the semifinals will play the championships on Nov. 9 at 1 p.m.
In the two matches against Texas College this year, the Saints won 3-0 (25-21, 25-13, 25-12 and 25-4, 25-10, 25-10). All-time, the Saints own the series against the Lady Steers 22-0. Texas's record is 4-18 overall and 1-11 in conference.
The Saints lost both of their matches this year to Wiley, first 0-3 (16-25, 18-25, 23-25) and 1-3 (18-25, 15-25, 26-24, 22-25). The series between the two teams is even at 11. Wiley's record this year is 17-10 overall and 10-2 in conference.
The Saints finished out the regular season with a 17-6 overall record and 8-4 in conference. Statistically, the Saints have a hitting percentage of .193. They tallied the most kills per set in the conference with 12.4 while having the third-best total kills with 1,044. The Saints are also tops in assists per set with 11.6 and third overall in total assists with 976. OLLU leads the conference in service aces per set with 2.1 and in total service aces with 176. The Saints marked 16.2 digs per set for a total of 1,362.
Sadie Ballesteros (FR/San Antonio, Texas) is the team's leader in hitting percentage at .279 – the second-best in the conference. Natalie Fazio (SR/Plano, Texas) averaged 2.6 kills per set for a total of 216. Anissa Tamez (JR/San Antonio, Texas) averaged the second-best 2.6 assists per sent for a total of 614 in the conference. Fazio led the conference in service aces with .5 per set for a total of 39. Alyssa Marquez (SO/Albuquerque, N.M.) averaged a conference-best 4.8 digs per set for a total of 436.