LEWISBURG, Pa. – Bucknell volleyball completed an unbeaten run to win the Bucknell Invitational with a 3-0 (26-24, 25-15, 25-11) win over Saint Peter’s on Sunday at Davis Gym. The Bison also had wins over La Salle and Iona in the five-team event.
Sophomore Sophie Bullard was named the Tournament MVP and was joined on the seven-player All-Tournament Team by sophomore Mimi Richards. Completing the team were Kathryn Wood (La Salle), Devin Corah (La Salle), Claire Archibald (Iona), Adriana Nieto (NJIT), and Natalia Carbonell Torres (Saint Peter’s).
After going five sets in each of its first two wins, Bucknell posted its first sweep of the season. It started out competitive with the close two-point margin in the first set, but the Bison came alive in the final two to clinch the lopsided victory.
Senior setter Luz Nagle showed her versatility in the match, leading the team with 24 assists while also adding five kills with no errors on just seven attacks. Mimi Richards was nearly as efficient, tallying seven kills and just one error on 11 attacks. The Bison hit .286 as a team.
Bullard had 10 kills to lead the team in that category for the third consecutive match to open the season. She also added 11 digs to record her third straight double-double. Junior Blake Buchholz wasn’t far behind in either category with eight kills and eight digs. Senior Hailey Stout contributed seven kills.
Richards wreaked havoc at the net for the Bison, tallying two solo blocks and six block assists. Bucknell finished with 12 total blocks and averaged 13.7 blocks over three matches. Senior Celeste Barker had three block assists against the Peacocks.
Bucknell is 3-0 to open the season for the first time since 1999.
Bullard earned MVP honors thanks to 46 kills (3.54/set) and 38 digs (2.92/set) in the three wins. She posted a .319 hitting percentage with just 10 errors on 113 attacks.
Richards got the All-Tournament nod thanks to 21 total blocks (1.62/set) and 26 kills (2.00/set). She was third in the Patriot League in blocks per set as a freshman last season.
Bucknell will look to keep the early-season momentum going when it returns to action, but will have a challenging task ahead when it travels to Stetson for three matches at the Hatter Classic on Sept. 2-3. In addition to the host Hatters, the Bison will take on Providence and East Carolina.