Notre Dame Varsity Volleyball opened the 2018 season by winning the Linden Invitational. The Irish swept pool play without dropping a set and came out the number one seed going into bracket play.
In the opening match, the Irish downed Bay City Central 25-16, 25-15. Maria Famularo led the offensive attack with nine kills followed by Natalie Risi with seven. At the service line Risi added eight points, including four aces and dished out 13 assists. Liv Kowalkowski added six service points to go with her five digs.
Notre Dame then defeated host Linden by identical scores of 25-21. Emily Mohr served up 10 points (two aces) while Risi continued her dominance at the net with 13 kills and 13 assists and Kowalkowski dug up 14 attacks.
The Irish took their third win of the morning over Fowlerville with scores of 25-20, 25-13. Risi put down 15 attacks while Bianca Giglio served four aces on her way to 12 points from the line. Alyssa Borellis dished out 20 assists and had eight digs.
The Irish then topped Lapeer 25-10, 25-19. Risi collected five more aces to go with her 12 points, eight kills, 11 assists and two blocks, Borellis drove home 10 kills and had 12 assists and Famularo had seven kills.
The final match in pool play saw the Irish defeat Lake Fenton 25-5 25-14. Risi had 14 more points and nine aces while Borellis had eight kills and 10 assists.
The tournament semifinal saw Notre Dame take on New Lothrop. The Irish came out on all cylinders to defeat the Hornets 25-12, 25-16. Kowalkowski came out strong, collecting five aces on her way to seven points while also adding 10 digs. Risi added 16 more kills and nine assists while Borellis added 16 assists.
In the finals the Irish took on Hartland. The Eagles came out flying and took the first set 25-18, handing the Irish their only blemish on the day. Notre Dame came back strong to take the second set 25-11. The Irish took a 9-2 lead in the third set before Hartland scored 8 unanswered points to take a 10-9 lead. The two teams traded points before the Eagles took a 14-11 lead. It was the Notre Dame who battled back to tie it up and take a 15-14 lead. An attack by Hartland tied it at 15 but Irish finished the match with kills from Risi and Borellis to take the tournament.