Alabama volleyball claims third tournament title in Bama Bash

Javon Williams | @javonwilliams_, Staff Reporter

In its final non-conference matches, Alabama women’s volleyball went undefeated at home in the Bama Bash Invitational. The Crimson Tide only lost two sets in its three matches against the University of Houston, Western Carolina University and Tennessee Tech University. 

University of Houston (3-1: 25-23, 22-25, 25-19, 25-20)

The opening match of the invitational for the Crimson Tide against Houston ended in four sets with Alabama taking the first set and the last two. Alabama had a total of eight aces with five service errors compared to Houston’s two aces with nine service errors. 

Alabama finished the match with 11 blocks, marking the team’s seventh time finishing a match with double-digit blocks this season. 

“We’ve talked all week about being fearless, and tonight was a great example across the board of all the little things we worked on this week in preparation for this match,” head coach Lindsey Devine said. 

Middle blocker Sarah Swanson led the defense at the net with five block assists and a career-best of four solo blocks. Swanson totaled the most solo blocks for an Alabama player since 2017. 

Outside hitter Abby Marjama and right-side hitter Kennedy Muckelroy tied for 11 kills in the match. Marjama also picked up her first double-double of the season, with 11 kills and 10 digs. Setter Emily Janek earned her fourth double-double, with 19 assists and 15 digs. 

Western Carolina University (3-1: 21-25, 25-19, 25-21, 25-23) and Tennessee Tech University (3-0: 25-13, 25-16, 25-23)

In its second match, Alabama fell in the first set against Western Carolina but made a comeback and secured the last three sets. 

Middle blocker Chaise Campbell led the team with 13 kills, and setter Brooke Slusser ended with 21 assists. Marjama led the team with six service aces, which gave Alabama a strong lead into the last set. 

In the last match of the invitational, Alabama swept Tennessee Tech and put up 12 of the 22 service aces between the two matches combined. 

Marjama finished the match with 11 kills, making her combined kill number 21 between the two matches. Slusser ended the match with 15 assists and a combined 36 assists for the day. 

Muckelroy was named the Bama Bash MVP, and Slusser was named to the All-Tournament team.   

“It’s just about preparing and reinforcing the things we need to do heading into SEC play,” Devine said. “We’ve been talking a lot about just attacking the adverse moments and giving yourself the opportunity to be successful by playing all out with a fearless approach.”

What’s Next?

The Crimson Tide will begin its SEC-filled schedule on Sept. 22 at 6 p.m. CT against Texas A&M. The match will be held at Foster Auditorium and will be broadcast on SEC Network+.