Penn State women’s volleyball will hold its annual Silent Set match Saturday when it plays host to Michigan State.

Penn State senior right side Jonni Parker, a honorable-mention All-American last spring, is hearing-impaired and has become a role model in showing children that no obstacle should stand in their way of pursuing greatness. The Silent Set started in 2019.

What does it mean? Fans are asked to stay completely silent during the Big Ten match until Penn State scores its ninth point of the first set in an effort to raise awareness for the hearing impaired. The ninth point was chosen in honor of Parker, the product of Casstown, Ohio, who wears jersey No. 9. Once the team’s ninth point is scored, it’s time to cheer.

The event will include an American Sign Language (ASL) interpreter for the National Anthem and fans will be instructed on how to cheer using ASL. The first 500 Penn State students in attendance will receive a free T-shirt with Penn State spelled out in sign language.

Here is a link to the feature the Big Ten Network At the Net did on Parker last year.

AVCA POLL — Texas and Louisville, the last unbeatens, stayed Nos. 1 and 2, respectively, but Wisconsin, now No. 4, and Pittsburgh, now No. 3, traded places in this week’s AVCA Division I Coaches Top 25 Women’s Poll.

Kentucky stayed at No. 5, but BYU moved up a notch to sixth, while Ohio State moved up two spots to No. 7. Purdue had the biggest jump, four spots to No. 8, Nebraska fell three spots to No. 9, and Baylor stayed at No. 10.

Minnesota stayed at No. 11, but Washington fell four spots to No. 12. Also dropping four spots was Stanford to 19th. Illinois moved in at No. 25, while Pepperdine, which swept both its matches, dropped out.

Click here for the complete AVCA Poll.

NCAA RPI — The ranking through matches this past Sunday showed the top seven teams more or less staying the same: Pittsburgh, Texas, Louisville, Wisconsin, Baylor, Kentucky, UCLA jumping from No. 11 to eighth. Ohio State is No. 9 and Purdue 10th. Click here for the complete NCAA RPI list, which you can sort by conferences.

AVCA DIVERSITY AWARDS — The AVCA honor, previously called the AVCA Minority Coaches Awards until 2015, has a list of 21:

Cecilia Blanchard, Women’s Volleyball Graduate Assistant, Virginia Commonwealth University; Jasmine Brown, Assistant Women’s Volleyball Coach, Denison University (Sponsored by NCAC); Jasmine Chambers, Women’s Volleyball Graduate Assistant, Midwestern State University; Kija Chambers, Epic Trainer/Coach, Henry Ford Health System; Madelyn Cole, Women’s Volleyball Graduate Assistant, Providence College; Candace Davenport, Club Director/Owner, Loyalty Volleyball Club (Sponsored by USAV Delta Region); Dekyra Dennis, Assistant Women’s Volleyball Coach, Hutchinson CC (Sponsored by the NJCAA); Kalisha Goree, Assistant Women’s Volleyball Coach, University of Akron; Chanelle Hargreaves, Club Volleyball Coach, Gainesville Juniors; Luiza Imbuzeiro Andrade, Assistant Women’s Volleyball Coach, Texas Woman’s University; Tyrell Jamison, Club Coach, Louisville Fury VBC (Sponsored by USAV Pioneer Region); Wil Jefferson, Assistant Women’s Volleyball Coach, Prairie View A&M University; Joseph Kelley, Volleyball Graduate Assistant, Fort Valley State University (Sponsored by EIVA); Carlisa May, Women’s Volleyball Graduate Assistant, University of Houston; Lauren Murray, Freshman Girls Volleyball Head Coach, Pike High School (IN); Bryan Paliza, Site Director, Recruiting Coordinator & Head Coach, Sky High VBC; Sara Parson, Women’s Volleyball Graduate Assistant, University of Kentucky; MyKeia Thomas, Club Director/Owner, St. Clair County VBC (Sponsored by USAV Gateway Region); Celeste Walton, 16-1 Head Coach, Cobb Atlanta Volleyball (Sponsored by USAV Southern Region); Andria Warner, Varsity Girls Head Coach/Head Coach 14U, Walt Whitman HS (MD)/MVSA VBC (Sponsored by USAV Chesapeake Region); Kynette Williams, Director, Phoenix Rising VBC-TN/GA (Sponsored by USAV Southern Region).

According to the AVCA news release, “recipients will participate in a series of educational, developmental, and relationship building experiences in conjunction with the 2021 AVCA Convention, December 15-18 (2020 AVCA Diversity Award winners have been invited to in-person programming at the 2021 AVCA Convention in Columbus, Ohio). Recipients will then be integrated into the AVCA Diversity Award winner alumni program that consists of continuing education, relationship building, and mentoring upon completion of the initial programming.”

MONDAY’S RESULTS — Denver is a game back of idle Omaha in The Summit League after sweeping at Oral Roberts. Lydia Bartalo led with 19 kills, two aces, and 12 digs. Ari Winters had 10 kills, four digs, and seven blocks, and Brianna Green had six kills and seven blocks … 

In the Mountain West, San Diego State won in five at UNLV. Zoi Faki led with 16 kills, three assists, an ace, seven digs, and a solo block …

In the SWAC, first-place Jackson State swept Alcorn, Alabama A&M beat Prairie View in four, Southern swept Mississippi Valley, and Alabama State swept Grambling. Ashley Jordan of Alabama A&M had 19 kills, two aces, 16 digs, and seven blocks, three solo …

Loyola’s lead is now two full games in the Missouri Valley after the Ramblers swept visiting Drake. Addie Barnes had 17 kills for Loyola with one error in 17 attacks to hit .7727 and had three aces and six digs … Also in the MVC, Indiana State swept Missouri State, Evansville beat Southern Illinois in four, and Valparaiso beat Northern Iowa in four. Evansville’s Giulia Cardona had 18 kills, five aces, and 13 digs.


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