Grant’s dominant effort nets honors

BEAUMONT – After dominating during a busy three-match week for the Lamar University volleyball squad, senior outside hitter Chelsea Grant was voted as the Southland Conference Player of the Week, the league announced Monday afternoon.

Grant, native of Killeen, Texas, is the first volleyball SLC Player of the Week from LU (5-17, 5-5 Southland) this season, and did it with a staggering 62 kills on the week. Her mark averaged out to 5.64 kills per set, which jumped her to the top of the league’s best hitter. Her 3.69 season average took over the top spot, holding a slim lead over Houston Baptist’s Bailey Banks (3.65).

“Chelsea is a player who is seeing the payoff of four years of hear work. We knew when we moved her outside that she would be able to hit angles that others in our league just can’t,” said head coach Alan Edwards. “She’s learned to try and move the hit around, and she has a high percentage because she’s learned to control errors.

“For us to be successful for the rest of this season, she still needs to add a few moves in the final weeks of the season,” he said.

She notched a career-best 28 kills against McNeese – which tied the fourth-highest mark in school history for kills in a single match - with a .368 attack percentage.

“That many kills is a big number, and honestly we could get her the ball more,” said Edwards. “She moved it around well and was able to cut inside the block. She can go right through the block or go over the top with back spin too. She’s really learned to do a lot of things.”

Including the MSU contest, she had more than five kills a set in each match and tallied 6.3 against Nicholls – on a .457 attack percentage. Against Abilene Christian at home, she put up 15 kills to tie her career-best for kills in a three-set match, which she later bested at Nicholls (18).

The Cardinals walked away with 3-0 wins against ACU and Nicholls to start off the week, first and second 3-0 wins on the year. In the final match against McNeese, Lamar had a 2-0 lead, but faltered in the final three sets to drop a heartbreaker.

Big Red opens a three-match homestand Thursday night at 7:00 against rival Stephen F. Austin.