Volleyball headed to Region XIV tournament
11.01.2017 | By Amanda Fenwick
PASADENA, Texas – The San Jacinto College volleyball team is headed to the Region XIV tournament as the No. 2 seed from the South Zone.
Ranked 12th in the country, San Jac stands at 24-5 overall and 9-1 in conference play. It will face Navarro College on Friday, Nov. 3 at 11 a.m., on the campus of Panola College.
“In our region, it doesn’t matter where you are seeded,” said San Jacinto College Head Coach Sharon Nelson, who is in her 16th season at the helm of the program. “Anyone you face in any round of that tournament is probably going to be nationally ranked and will be tough competition. We have to go there and put together three consecutive matches where we play perfect in order to qualify for the national tournament.”
Sophomores Savannah Sheridan (Chicago, Illinois / Prairie Ridge HS) and Madison Rhoder (Houston / Fort Bend Stephen F. Austin HS) lead the team in kills per set at 3.12 and 2.98 respectively. Sheridan, a 6-4 right side / outsider hitter, has seen action in 27 of 29 matches and is hitting .312 on the season. Rhoder, a 6-0 middle blocker, has seen action in all 29 matches and owns a team-best 292 total kills and 139 blocks. She is hitting .377 on the year, which is seventh best in the nation, and her blocks per set mark of 1.42 is also seventh best nationally.
Defensively, sophomore defensive specialist Addie Bryant leads the team in digs with 532 total and a per set average of 5.48.
With 10 student-athletes who have had regional tournament playing experience, Nelson says her team is mentally and physically prepared for the challenge that awaits them this weekend.
“We’ve been playing really well the last couple of weeks,” added Nelson. “Our last couple of practices have been phenomenal, and if anyone wants to say we are peaking at the right time, it looks like we are trying to do that. I am excited to see what happens on the court this weekend.”
The 2017 Region XIV volleyball tournament runs Friday, Nov. 3 through Sunday, Nov. 5, at the Arthur Johnson Gymnasium in Carthage, Texas. The top two teams from the tournament will earn automatic berths to the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) national tournament, slated for Nov. 16-19 in Hutchinson, Kansas.
Under Nelson’s 16-year tutelage, San Jac has won eight regional titles and 11 conference championships. Nelson’s teams have finished in the top 11 at the national tournament in nine of the last 10 seasons, including a national runner-up in 2010. Nelson has 454 career wins and is ranked among the most successful active NJCAA Division I volleyball head coaches.
Information about the 2017 Region XIV volleyball tournament can be found on the Panola College website.
About San Jacinto College
Surrounded by monuments of history, industries and maritime enterprises of today, and the space age of tomorrow, San Jacinto College has been serving the citizens of East Harris County, Texas, since 1961. As a fiscally sound institution, the College currently holds bond ratings of AA and Aa2 by Standard & Poor’s and Moody’s, respectively. San Jacinto College is a 2017 Aspen Prize for Community College Excellence Rising Star Award recipient and an Achieving the Dream Leader College. Approximately 45,000 credit and non-credit students each year benefit from a support system that maps out a pathway for success. The College offers eight areas of study that prepare a diverse body of students to transfer to four-year colleges or universities or enter the workforce with the skills needed to support the growing industries along the Texas Gulf Coast. San Jacinto College graduates contribute nearly $690 million each year to the Texas workforce.