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By RICK PETERSON

TopSports.news

Former Washburn Rural multi-sport star Brooklyn DeLeye was named the tournament’s Most Valuable Player and Best Spiker after helping lead the U.S. Women's U21 National Team to the 2024 NORCECA Women’s U21 Continental Championship gold medal with a 25-12, 25-16, 25-16 win over Puerto Rico on Sunday in Toronto, Canada.

BrooklynDeLeyeTop100 3Former Washburn Rural multi-sport star Brooklyn DeLeye was named the most valuable player for Team USA, which won the NORCECA Women’s U21 Continental Championship gold medal Sunday in Toronto. [File photo/TSN]

DeLeyeUSAvolleyball 2Washburn Rural graduate Brooklyn DeLeye (front row, fourth from right) helped U.S. Volleyball post a perfect 5-0 record in the NORCECA Women’s U21 Continental Championship, with Team USA winning all five matches in straight sets. [USA Volleyball]

With the title, the U.S. automatically qualified for the 2025 Women’s U21 World Championship.

The U.S., which did not lose a set in five wins in the tournament, finished the gold medal match with significant margins in kills (46-24), blocks (9-2), and aces (7-3).

DeLeye, a 6-foot-2 Kentucky sophomore, and fellow outside hitter Julia Blyashov both reached double-digits and recorded seven kills in the final match.

DeLeye led all players with four aces to finish with 11 points, while Blyashov contributed two blocks and an ace for 10 points.

Middle blocker Andi Jackson led all scorers with 14 points on 10 kills, a match-high three blocks, and one ace.

Setters Bergen Reilly and Campbell Flynn led the U.S. to a sterling .474 hitting efficiency (46 kills, 9 errors, 76 total attacks). Reilly added two kills and a block. Gary totaled 14 digs, more than twice as many as the next highest total.

Opposite Kennedy Martin scored eight points on six kills and a pair of blocks. Outside Blaire Bayless scored five points in the third set with three kills to go with a block and an ace. Middle blockers Favor Anyanwu (five) and Taylor Harvey (four) combined for nine kills.

DeLeye served for eight consecutive points with two aces in the first set as the U.S. turned a 9-7 lead into a 17-7 advantage. Martin led all scorers with six points on five kills and a block, followed by Blyashov, who scored five points on three kills and two blocks.

After losing the first three points of the second set, Puerto Rico scored 10 of the next 16 points to take a 10-9.

The U.S. led by just two points, 16-14, before finishing the set on a 9-2 run. Jackson scored three points in the run and DeLeye added two.

DeLeye led the team with six points (four kills, two aces), Blyashov (four kills, one ace) and Jackson (three kills, one block, one ace) each scored five points.

The U.S. took control of the third set with a 13-3 spurt to take an 18-7 lead, ending on a Bayless ace. Play went back and forth for the remainder of the set with Jackson scoring the penultimate U.S. point and outside Abby Vander Wal scoring the gold medal-clinching point on a kill.

DeLeye led Washburn Rural to Class 6A volleyball and basketball state championships during her high school career and was also a soccer standout for the Junior Blues.

DeLeye was named the Topeka Shawnee County Female Athlete of the Year as a senior. 

NORCECA Women’s U21 Continental Championship

Match scores

USA def. Dominican Republic, 25-18, 25-21, 25-11; USA def. Suriname, 25-10, 25-5, 25-9; USA def. Puerto Rico, 25-10, 25-17, 25-15; 
USA def. Dominican Republic, 25-20, 25-13, 25-12; USA def. Puerto Rico, 25-12, 25-16, 25-16.

 

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