Titans Volleyball continues netting success

OCCAC Player of the Year, Olivia Materni
OCCAC Player of the Year, Olivia Materni

The Terra State Titans women’s volleyball team is becoming used to the spotlight, sitting at no. 7 nationally in the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) rankings. After winning the Ohio Community College Athletic Conference (OCCAC) Volleyball Title, a first for the program since 1999, the Titans were handed the no. 1 seed for the NJCAA Volleyball Great Lakes District B tournament.

"Our Athletic Department is extremely proud of the resiliency that our Volleyball program has shown through these COVID-related times. They have provided our College with excitement. They took the momentum from last year's Sweet-16 journey and continued it in winning the OCCAC in 2021. They have continued the process and hopefully continue their path as they enter the Region 12 tournament this week," said Gregg Hedden, athletic director. 

The Titans secured their trip to the tournament after a win against Owens Community College on Friday, October 22. The team finished the regular season at 31-3 overall and a 12-0 in conference play under the leadership of OCCAC Coach of the Year Stephanie Champine.

Olivia Materni, who led the Titans in kills, total attacks, service aces and points was named OCCAC Player of the Year and OCCAC DII Player of the Year. Materni has also been added to the 1st Team All-Conference list. She also received OCCAC player of the week at the end of August earlier this year.

Teammate Karagyn Durco was named OCCAC Setter of the Year and 1st Team All-Conference accolades. Joining Materni and Durco in the 1st Team All-Conference lists are Elizabeth Wells and Jakyla Jackson, who also brought home the OCCAC player of the week honor twice in September. Wells was also selected for the OCCAC All-Freshman Team and Si’Ayera Boone received OCCAC Honorable Mention All-Conference honors.

The next step for the Titans is the NJCAA Volleyball Great Lakes District B tournament, held November 4 – 6 in Port Huron, Michigan. The Titans have a bye the first round and will take on the winner of no. 4 Kalamazoo Valley Cougars and no. 5 Glenn Oaks Vikings match on Thursday, November 4 at 8:00 p.m. EST.

Champine feels the effort in practice has prepared the team for the upcoming tournament. “We have been working really hard in practice to fine tune all the little details to help prepare for a tough district tournament,” said Champine. “Throughout the season, the growth on and off the court for these ladies has been tremendous. We are excited to be in post season play and looking forward to making our presence known at the district tournament.”

The tournament setting is a familiar place for the Titans, who knocked off Mott Community College this past April to take home the regional championship in their second season since reinstating athletics at the College.

The Titans followed up their win with a trip to nationals as the 15th seed, losing in the first round to Parkland Community College, before compiling three straight victories over Walters State Community College, North Platte Community College and Grand Rapids Community College. The team finished 9th place overall and was awarded the NJCAA DII Volleyball Championship Sportsmanship Award for their historic championship run.