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GRCC volleyball’s impressive season comes to an end with loss in regional final

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(Kennedy Rappleye/The Collegiate)

The Grand Rapids Community College women’s volleyball team lost in the National Junior College Athletic Association Regional Championship versus Terra State Community College to end the 2021-22 season. 

Sophomore Annie Holesinger and freshman Audrey Torres were named to the NJCAA Region XII District B All-Tournament Team. 

“I feel honored to be on the all tournament team,” Holesinger said. “It made me feel validated with all (the) work I put in, but most importantly it showcases my teammates and the work that they put in. If I didn’t have my teammates supporting me I would not be the player I am today.” 

Through the five-game stretch, Holesinger had 49 kills and 16 blocks, while Torres finished with 50 kills, 49 digs and eight aces. 

During the regional semi-final, sophomore Kylie Oberlin went down with an injury and didn’t return for the remainder of the tournament. 

The Raiders started out the second day of the tournament with a rematch against Muskegon Community College in the regional semi-final. The Raiders were able to easily defeat the Jayhawks, sweeping them in three sets (25-18, 25-19, 25-21) and advancing to the regional final to face the Terra State Titans. 

The Titans were able to defeat the Raiders in three-straight sets (23-25, 19-25, 25-27) to win the regional championship, leading to the Raiders becoming first runners-up in the tournament. 

Throughout the tournament, the Raiders saw contributions from freshman Shannon Russell (156 assists and nine aces), redshirt-freshman Kara Hecht (36 kills, six blocks and six aces), sophomore Kylie Oberlin (20 kills and seven blocks), freshman Ola Nowak (52 digs, 23 assists, and six aces), and freshman Karissa Ferry (16 kills and nine blocks). 

The Raiders ended the season 24-7 overall and a perfect 14-0 conference record. The Raiders won the Michigan Community College Athletic Association Western Conference and the MCCAA State Championship, along with finishing as the runner-up in the NJCAA Region XII District B Tournament.  

“I think this season as a whole was one that no one will forget,” Holesinger said. “We set records for an undefeated (conference) season and our winning streak. It was incredible.”