The 2009 Ferris State University women's volleyball team is the first-ever recipient of the Volleyball Market/American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) Play of the Week as announced by the AVCA this Wednesday (Sept. 30) afternoon.
A total of 8,000 votes were cast in the debut week as the Bulldogs bested out four other semifinalists - Academy of Art University, University of Hawai'i, University of Hawai'i-Hilo and The Ohio State University - during a week-long voting period.
Ferris State's award-winning play came in the second set of the Bulldogs' home match-up with Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) rival Grand Valley State University, which took place at FSU's Ewigleben Sports Arena in Big Rapids, Mich. The play begins with the sophomore outside hitter Ashley Huntey (Stanwood/Morley-Stanwood) serving to the GVSU players. The Lakers' right side hitter then fires an attack attempt over the net, which is saved by junior libero Dana Ruttle (Reed City) with a sprawling dig that sails off towards the scorer's table. Redshirt freshman setter Samantha Fordyce (DeWitt) races after the ball, and with her back to the court, bump-sets a perfectly placed ball for junior middle blocker Arielle Goodson (Grand Rapids/Central), who smashes it just past the right hand of the opposing blocker into the middle of the GVSU court. The Bulldogs went on to drop the tightly-contested match in five sets, succumbing in the final set to the Lakers, 15-13.
The Bulldogs' award-winning play, which can be viewed on the AVCA's YouTube channel by clicking here, will now join the coming weeks' finalists in becoming eligible for the Volleyball Market/AVCA Play of the Year, to be announced at the AVCA All-America/Players of the Year Banquet on Friday, Dec. 18, at the AVCA Convention in Tampa, Fla.
The 2009 Ferris State women's volleyball team is directed by head coach Tia Brandel-Wilhelm along with assistant coaches Theresa Beeckman and Dale Wilhelm.