Molly McCage, Nootsara Tomkom

Recap: Linnehan secures first win as captain, ends Team Hentz win streak, 71-68

© Athletes Unlimited, LLC 2023 / Credit: Jade Hewitt Media
Eric Rhew
Oct 27, 2023

MESA, Arizona — Outside hitter Alli Linnehan will have plenty of reasons to remember her team’s 71-68 victory over Team Hentz in the first match of Friday’s Athletes Unlimited Volleyball doubleheader at Legacy Park.

The triumph not only marked her first positive result in four tries as a captain this season, but the conclusion also halted a record-setting 11-match win streak for libero Morgan Hentz, which included a six-game string as a team captain over the last two weeks.

And Linnehan certainly did her part to make sure her teammates were the ones celebrating after the final point, earning MVP 1 recognition after notching 11 kills and a season-high 17 digs to finish with 395 leaderboard points.

Opposite Willow Johnson followed her captain with MVP 2 honors after securing a match-high 15 kills with seven digs, giving the former Oregon standout 291 leaderboard points.

Middle blocker Molly McCage continued her string of Match MVP performances after being named the MVP 3 selection. McCage, who has been recognized in her last five matches, recorded six kills with two solo blocks and three digs to collect 221 leaderboard points.

Outside hitter Brooke Nuneviller led Team Hentz in the loss with 11 kills and a season-high 17 digs, while outside hitter Lindsay Stalzer nearly added a double-double of her own with nine kills and nine digs.


After Team Hentz secured a 25-21 result in the opening set, Team Linnehan answered by taking the final two sets to claim the match victory and end Hentz’s record-setting win streak. The squad eked out a 25-22 victory in the middle frame to close the match deficit to 47-46 before a 25-21 verdict in the final set sealed the result.


The top of the leaderboard tightened up with the streak-snapping result. While Hentz remains in second place in the league standings, Linnehan stands just three points behind in third place. McCage, meanwhile, moved into the top four spots with her MVP performance.


  • Team Linnehan and Team Hentz combined to record two service aces during Friday’s Week Four opener, raising the league’s season total to 95 aces through 19 matches … Aspiration is committed to planting 10 trees for every service ace this season as part of its ‘Aspiration Aces’ initiative.

  • Team Hentz and Team Linnehan squared off for the second time this season … Team Hentz defeated Team Linnehan by a 76-51 count in the first meeting to begin Week Two on October 13.

  • Hentz, whose 11-match win streak equaled the longest winning stretch by a player in any Athletes Unlimited sport, suffered her first defeat since April 14, 2022 … Her nine-match win streak to open the 2023 campaign also tied a league record.

  • Hentz, who has tallied double-digit digs in all 10 matches this season, now owns 24 career outings with 10 or more digs … She also extended her streak of consecutive matches with 10 or more digs to 22 in a row.

  • Nuneviller notched her third double-double of the season with 11 kills and a season-high 17 digs … Nuneviller has authored three consecutive matches with 10 or more kills … She has also posted double-digit digs in five of her last seven outings.

  • Linnehan posted her second double-double of the season after her 11-kill, 17-dig performance … She also had a double-double of 19 kills and 19 digs in the season opener against Team De La Cruz on October 6.

  • Linnehan has authored double-digit kills in four consecutive matches.

  • Linnehan, who posted her fourth match with 300 or more leaderboard points this season, is averaging 362.0 points over her last four outings.

  • Setter Alisha Childress finished with a match-high 33 assists in the loss for Team Hentz, marking her eighth match with 30 or more assists this season … She also notched 30 or more assists for the 16th time in her Athletes Unlimited career, the second-highest total in league history.

  • Johnson recorded 15 or more kills for the fifth time in her Athletes Unlimited career, including the fourth time this season.

  • Libero Nomaris Vélez Agosto ran her streak of consecutive double-digit dig outputs to nine in a row after finishing with 17 digs to share match-high honors with Linnehan and Nuneviller … She now owns a league-record 33 career matches with 10 or more digs.

  • Outside hitter Erin Fairs recorded a season-high 10 digs in Friday’s victory for Team Linnehan, marking the 11th time she has tallied 10 or more digs in her Athletes Unlimited career.


  • #1 – Alli Linnehan (Team Linnehan, +60)
  • #2 – Willow Johnson (Team Linnehan, +40)
  • #3 – Molly McCage (Team Linnehan, +20)
Photos of the Match

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