With two full weeks of NCAC Volleyball action in the books, nationally-ranked Wittenberg sits atop the league standings with a perfect 4-0 mark against league foes, while DePauw is also unblemished in conference action with a 3-0 record. League squads return to the court this week with five NCAC matches on the slate, highlighted by Ohio Wesleyan hosting Wittenberg on Wednesday night and DePauw traveling to Wooster on Saturday afternoon.
ALLEGHENY dropped a pair of three-set decisions last week against Wooster and Ohio Wesleyan. Freshman Lauryn Long (Oakdale, PA/West Allegheny) finished the two-match stretch with 14 kills, 12 digs and four aces, which included a team-high nine kill performance against OWU.
DENISON went 0-2 last week, first dropping a 3-1 decision against No. 5 Wittenberg on Thursday, before suffering another 3-1 loss against non-conference foe Bluffton on Friday night. Junior Kristin Thewes (Austin, TX/St. Stephens Episcopal) scooped up her 1,000th career dig in the match against Wittenberg and went on to finish the week with 55 total digs.
DEPAUW, which appears in the “Others Receiving Votes” section of the AVCA Top-25, posted a pair of 3-0 victories last week against in-state rival Rose-Hulman on Thursday and NCAC foe Oberlin on Saturday. The Tigers have now won four-straight matches and nine of their last 10. Senior libero Rachael Lenderman (Hinsdale, IL/Central) paced the Tigers’ defensive unit on the week with 44 digs, which included a season-best average of 8.7 digs per set in the win over RHIT.
HIRAM went 1-1 in NCAC action last week, topping Oberlin by a 3-0 margin on Wednesday, before dropping a 3-2 thriller at Kenyon on Saturday. Senior outside hitter Marissa Jay (Parma, OH/Padua Franciscan), who leads the NCAC this season with 246 kills, continued her offensive charge last week with 11 kills against the Yeowomen and 24 against the Ladies.
KENYON jumped into sole possession of third place in the NCAC standings last week with a pair of wins over Ohio Wesleyan, 3-0, and Hiram, 3-2. Sophomore Delaney Swanson (Sonoma, CA/Sonoma Valley) steered the Ladies to the two conference victories with team-highs on the week in both kills (36) and digs (30). Her week was capped off by a 21-kill, 15-dig performance in the Ladies’ 3-2 come-from-behind victory over Hiram.
OBERLIN suffered a pair of straight set losses in league play last week against Hiram and DePauw. Sophomore Sara Chang (Potomac, MD/Winston Chuchill) did a little bit of everything on the week for the Yeowomen with 21 set assists, 16 digs, and seven kills.
OHIO WESLEYAN, which appears in the “Others Receiving Votes” section of the AVCA Top-25, split a pair of NCAC matches last week, falling to Kenyon, 3-0, on Wednesday, before rebounding with a straight-set over Allegheny on Saturday. In the win over the Gators, OWU’s offensive unit was led by junior outside hitter Iris Anderson (Elk Grove, CA/Christian Brothers) with 15 kills and senior setter Shannon Schlater (Englewood, OH/Northmont) with 34 set assists.
WITTENBERG, ranked fifth in the AVCA Top-25, picked up a pair of 3-1 victories last week in conference action against Denison and Wooster. Junior outside hitter Maddie Fischer (Minerva, OH/Minerva) finished the week with 32 kills against just 10 hitting errors in 79 total attempts for a .278 hitting percentage. She also added her second 20-plus kill performance of the season with exactly 20 in the 3-1 win over Wooster on October 1st.
WOOSTER remained at .500 in NCAC play last week at 2-2 after topping Allegheny, 3-0, on Wednesday and falling to No. 5 Wittenberg, 3-1, on Saturday. Despite the loss against Wittenberg, it did mark the first time since 2012 that the Scots won a set against the Tigers. Junior Ksenia Klue (Medina, OH/Medina) led Wooster on the week by averaging 3.29 kills per set, which included a team-best 14 kills in the loss against Wittenberg.