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2018 Liberty Volleyball Season Recap with Trevor Johnson

December 5, 2018  Lynchburg, Va.  RSS
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Following the conclusion of Liberty's 2018 volleyball season, LFSN reporter Nick Pierce had a chance to catch up with first-year head coach Trevor Johnson for an interview.

• The Lady Flames went 15-17 on the season, including 10-6 in ASUN play during their first year in the conference. Liberty earned the fourth seed for the 2018 ASUN Volleyball Championship, becoming the first volleyball team since ETSU in 2005 to make the ASUN Tournament in its first year in the conference.

• Liberty swept fifth-seeded Stetson in the first round of the ASUN Volleyball Championship before falling to conference champion FGCU in the semifinal. The Lady Flames have qualified for the conference semifinal each of the last three years.

 • This year, the Lady Flames got off to a great start to conference play, winning their first four ASUN matches in a row. Liberty swept the season series from Jacksonville, NJIT, North Alabama, North Florida and Stetson.

• When the Lady Flames swept Stetson on Nov. 8, it was the 100th career coaching victory in Johnson's career. He has posted a 101-31 career record combined between his time at Concordia (Calif.) and Liberty.

• The Lady Flames went 7-3 at home this season, opening with a 3-0 sweep of Virginia on Sept. 11, the team's first sweep of the Cavaliers since 1979. Liberty won its last six home matches in a row to end a program-record nine-match homestand.

• Junior right-side hitter Casey Goodwin was named to the ASUN All-Conference first team, while junior middle blockers Anna Gragg and Kainah Williams were tabbed to the second team. Freshman outside hitter Lilly Kruse was voted to the All-Freshman team, while junior setter Hannah Morris received All-Academic team mention.      

• Goodwin, the Fan-Voted Preseason ASUN Player of the Year, received her second straight all-conference honor. She finished the season ranked fifth in the conference with 3.00 kills per set, led the ASUN with 40 aces and was 55th in the nation in aces per set. Goodwin led the team with 14 double-digit kill matches, including a career-high 25 against North Florida on Oct. 21.

• Gragg earned her third straight all-conference honor, becoming the first Liberty player since Jade Craycraft (2010-12) to receive all-conference mention as a freshman, sophomore and junior. She enters her senior season tied for 10th in program history with 313 career blocks and is the first player in program history with three straight 100-block seasons.

• Margaret Latchford finished the season ranked sixth in the conference with 3.72 digs per set. She capped her standout career at Liberty with 1,784 career digs, ranking second in program history. A strong contributor in the back row, she appeared in 443 straight sets, a streak that started during her freshman career.

• Williams was one of the top middle blockers in the conference this season. In conference play, she ranked third in the ASUN in both hitting percentage (.370) and blocks per set (1.27). She finished the season ranked in the top 100 nationally in both hitting percentage (54th- .356) and blocks per set (92nd – 1.14).

• Morris had a standout season as a junior, leading the Lady Flames with a career-high 966 assists. She finished the season ranked third in the ASUN with 9.38 assists per set in conference play and fourth overall with 8.55 assists per set. Morris distributed for an offense that ranked third in the ASUN with a .264 hitting percentage in league matches.

• Kruse was a strong contributor at the outside hitter position down the stretch as a freshman. She averaged 2.89 kills per set while hitting .243 during the final six matches of the regular season. Kruse scored 10 or more kills in two out of the final three regular-season matches, including a career-high 17 kills at Lipscomb.