Jordan Lockwood

Daily Sun File photo/Ron Farmer

Navarro’s Jordan Lockwood, seen here during the regular season, and Navarro’s Deja Arnold were both named to the NJCAA’s DI All-American volleyball team.

Navarro's volleyball team had no trouble on the opening day of the NJCAA Division I Women's Volleyball Tournament in Hutchinson, Kansas on Thursday, and advanced to the first volleyball Final Four appearance in the school's history.

The Bulldogs made their first appearance in the NJCAA Tournament last year and first-year coach Andy Cavins has his team just two wins away from a national title. 

The No 1- ranked Bulldogs are the top-seed in the 16-team field and took care of 16th seeded Monroe 3-1 in their opening match, winning 25-21, 22-25, 25-21 and 25-20 Thursday afternoon to advance to the quarterfinals.

Jordan Russell, who was the Region XIV Player of the Year, led the way at the net with15 kills and Deja Arnold and Monica Wood had 14 kills each. Emily Witt had 54 assists and led the defense with 15 digs.

The Bulldogs were even more impressive in Thursday night's quarterfinal round match against Hillsborough (Tampa, Fla), sweeping their way to the semifinals, 25-21, 25-5 and 25-18 to improve to 29-0.

Russell had 12 kills and five digs in the three-set match and Arnold (five kills and two block assists) and Wood (three kills and three block assists) chipped in as well in the one-sided match that allowed Navarro to substitute freely.

Aleksandra Rojecka had a big match with seven kills and four block assists and Johanna Montero had nine kills. Witt had 27 assists and six digs and libero Carla Boudal led the defense with 15 digs.

The Bulldogs face Polk State (Fla.) in the semifinals in one of the more interesting matchups of the tournament. Polk State spent the first part of the season ranked No. 1 in the NJCAA Division I poll until Andy Cavins' Bulldogs took over the No. 1 spot.

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