Head Coach Lizzy Stemke and Associate Head Coach Josh Lauer
Jan. 10, 2014
Head Coach Lizzy Stemke took the Georgia volleyball team, which finished with a 22-10 record, to new heights this past season, setting milestones along the way. Among the highlights was reaching the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 2004, recording its first 20-win season since 2002, earning the most wins (22) since 1994, recording the most Southeastern Conference wins (11) since 1995 and defeated then-No. 15 Kentucky at home in front of nearly 2,000 people and a nationally televised ESPN audience in Stegeman Coliseum.
The Bulldogs started its season by winning 11 of its first 13 matches, with their only losses coming at the hands of nationally ranked Nebraska and Kansas. Georgia picked up its first Southeastern Conference win of the season at LSU, marking the second time in as many years that the Bulldogs won in Baton Rouge.
After a setback to Texas A&M, Georgia went on to win its next three SEC contests, picking up wins over Tennessee, Ole Miss and South Carolina. Georgia entered its toughest stretch of the season following the wins, playing at No. 2 Florida, at No. 18 Missouri, at Arkansas before hosting No. 15 Kentucky. After falling in the first three matches of the stretch, the Bulldogs earned a thrilling 3-2 win over No. 15 Kentucky, marking Stemke’s first win over a ranked team since arriving at Georgia.
The Bulldogs followed the win by winning two of its next three matches, including a match at Tennessee, securing their first win in Knoxville since 2001 and their first season sweep of the Lady Vols since 1997.
Georgia ended the regular season by winning five of its final seven matches, including two on the road at Ole Miss and Mississippi State. During the run, the Bulldogs earned a 3-1 win over Auburn at home to close out conference play.
On Dec. 1, the team gathered at Stemke’s home to watch the NCAA Selection Show to await their tournament fate. The team didn’t have to wait long, as Georgia was one of the first teams to learn its destination. The Bulldogs were selected to travel to Durham, N.C., to take on American University in the first round.
Georgia’s best season in recent history came to a close against American, as it fell 3-0 to the Eagles. American went on to defeat nationally seeded Duke to advance in the tournament.
The season was also highlighted by several individual accomplishments, as Brittany Northcutt became just the 16th player in program history to amass over 1,000 kills in a career, helping to her all-conference honors and becoming the first Bulldog to earn a spot on the All-SEC team since 2010. Allison Summers recorded 528 digs on the season, bringing her career total to 1,707, which ranks second all-time.