Atlanta, Ga. - Playing for their clubs at the 2011 USA Volleyball Girls' Junior National Championships, incoming freshman Gillian Howard and Katy Tagart each took home medals at the tournament while competing against some of the nation's best. The duo each took home third place medals as their respective club teams, Coast 18 and Vision 18 Gold, tied for third out of 32 competing teams.
Running through much of the tournament, Howard and her Coast club teammates finished an impressive 8-1, winning their first eight matches before falling in the semifinal round to Synergy 18 Orange, the tournament runner-up. Throughout the tournament, Howard proved to be one of the top players at the Georgia World Congress Center in Atlanta as the future Tiger was named to the all-tournament team at the end of the four day event.
Joining Howard on the East Coast, Tagart and her Vision teammates followed a similar path to the semifinals of the 18 Open division as they picked up eight wins in their first nine matches to advance to within one match of the finals. The lone loss of pool play for Vision came to Howard and Coast in their final match of the early action. Vision would fall to the eventual bracket champion Sports Shack 18-Asics to finish 8-2 and tied for third.
Both Howard and Tagart will make their Pacific debuts alongside the rest of the 2011 Tigers on Aug. 26 in Cedar City, Utah when they take on Boise State to open play at the Southern Utah Invitational. They will make their home debuts at the Alex G. Spanos Center on Sept. 1 when Pacific take on Duke prior to kicking off the 33rd Annual Bankers Classic.