Four volleyball players named All-Americans

Four members of the volleyball team were named All-Americans this past week.


John Buchanan

18, Amy Weststeyn, MB, So. 9, Nicolette Mather, RS, Sr. 23, Tara Rallis, L/DS, Jr. 15, Charley Parker, L/DS, So. 21, Joclyn Kirton, OH, Fr. 6, Gracee Gallarda, S, Jr. October 20 John Buchanan/THE CHIMES

Tyler Gunhus, Writer

During a game on October 20, the girls gather around to pump each other up. | John Buchanan/THE CHIMES [file photo]

Despite falling to Concordia University Irvine in the NAIA semifinals, Biola volleyball continues to find solace in reaping other awards. This past week, four total players were placed on the All-American teams.

It is not surprising the Eagles placed so many players on the national level top tier. Biola, who finished the season with a No. 4 ranking, went 31-5 on the season, claiming second place in the Golden State Athletic Conference. Three out of their five losses came at the hands of Concordia, who won the GSAC and would later go on to a perfect 38-0 record, capped off by a national championship title.

All-tournament honors despite defeat in NAIA semifinals

After thrilling wins in pool play of the NAIA nationals, Biola was unable to overcome their GSAC rival Concordia and was knocked out of the tournament in the semifinals. Despite the loss, senior Christine Douglas and sophomore Amy Weststeyn received all-tournament honors for their performances in Sioux City.

The accolades wouldn’t stop there.

Douglas and Weststeyn also received high praise for the regular season they put forward, both being named to the All-American first team. Biola also saw two other players, juniors Gracee Gallarda and Chelsee Arnitz, given second team honors.

This is not Douglas’ first All-American finish. She has continually moved up the ladder throughout her career, being named to the third team her sophomore year and second team her junior year. The outside hitter has recorded 1,465 kills over her three seasons with the team.

Younger teammates show potential

Both Arnitz and Gallarda had solid seasons as well. Arnitz, a middle blocker, saw her production since last season improve, recording 50 more kills than last season. Gallarda, one of the team’s go-to setters, led the GSAC in assists with 1,143.

As the youngest of the bunch, Weststeyn has proven over her two years at Biola that she is an elite player. Named NAIA Freshman of the Year last season, Weststeyn followed with another impressive season. Recording 324 kills and a solid 94 blocks on the season, Weststeyn’s continual production and improvement at her position could likely lead the Eagles back to nationals next season.

Biola tied with Concordia for having the most All-Americans between the first and second team at four.

Moving forward, the Eagles will have to find ways to make up a loss of production with the departure of Douglas, but should not be concerned due to the depth of the current roster. With plenty of talent in the underclassmen levels, the Eagles can prepare to hopefully see more and more All-Americans throughout the next few years.

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