REGIONAL FINALS: CALVIN 3, WITTENBERG 2 (25-22, 22-25, 23-25, 25-15, 14-16)
GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. –The Wittenberg Volleyball team saw its season end on Saturday, Nov. 10, against Calvin College. The Tigers forced a fifth set but were just edged in the final points, falling, 25-22, 22-25, 23-25,25-15, 14-16.
The fifth set was back and forth through the first handful of points. With Wittenberg down 12-11, an Aubrey Cox (Tipp City, Ohio/Tippecanoe) kill and a Taylor Brown (Springfield, Ohio/Kenton Ridge) service ace put the Tigers up one, 13-12. Calvin called timeout and came out of the break with back-to-back points to go up 14-13. Cox delivered another timely kill to tie it back up at 14 but the Knights ended the match with consecutive points.
Wittenberg was led in kills by Cox and Haley Horner (Wheaton, Ill./North), who each secured 14 for the red and white. Taylor Yontz (Springfield, Ohio/Shawnee) issued a game-high 34 digs while Karen Wildemann (Columbus, Ind./North) led the Tigers with 46 assists.
The No. 3-ranked Tigers end their season at 25-3 while No. 1-ranked Calvin sits at 31-1.
2ND ROUND: WITTENBERG 3, DEPAUW 0 (25-22, 25-18, 28-26)
GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. – North Coast Athletic Conference (NCAC) members Wittenberg and DePauw collided on Friday night in the second round of the NCAA Division III Volleyball Tournament at Calvin College on Nov. 9. The Tigers from Wittenberg edged the Tigers From DePauw in three sets, 25-22, 25-18, 28-26.
Wittenberg opened up the match with a narrow set victory. The set was tied at 21 before Wittenberg went on a 4-1 run, capped off by an Aubrey Cox (Tipp City, Ohio/Tippecanoe) kill.
The red and white opened the second set on a 7-1 run and maintained at least a three-point edge from there to the end of the set. Katie Hiestand (Canton, Ohio/St. Thomas Aquinas) ended the set with a kill, sealing a 25-18 victory.
Wittenberg again had an 18-15 lead in set three before DePauw rallied with an 8-2 run, capped off by a Meaghan Etling (Terre Haute, Ind./South) spike. Wittenberg called timeout down 23-20 and came out of the break with a Cox kill to close the Tigers within two, 23-21. Wittenberg was able to tie it up at 24 on a Cox service ace and took a 25-24 lead with a block assist from Haley Horner (Wheaton, Ill./North) and Kennedey Schmidt (Englewood, Ohio/Northmont). Up 27-26, Wittenberg sealed the match with a Schmidt kill.
Wittenberg improved its record to 25-2 while DePauw ends its season at 18-11.
The Wittenberg Tigers will take on Calvin in the round of 16 on Saturday, Nov. 10. The match will be at 7 p.m. in Grand Rapids, Mich.
1ST ROUND: DEPAUW 3, HOPE 2 (25-18, 23-25, 21-25, 25-23, 15-9)
GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. – DePauw Volleyball rallied in five sets to defeat Hope in the first round of the NCAA Division III Volleyball Tournament on Thursday, Nov. 8, at Calvin College. The Tigers lost two of the first three sets before rallying to win the final two, 25-18, 23-25, 21-25, 25-23, 15-9.
DePauw and Hope were tied at 23 in the fourth set when the Flying Dutch committed a service error to put the Tigers up, 24-23. Hope called timeout to regroup but set-point went to DePauw as Liv Hartman (Danville, Ind./Danville) delivered a kill.
Morgan Stearley (Center Point, Ind./Northview) put DePauw up with a kill for the first point in the fifth set. The Tigers stretched the lead to 9-7 before Hope called timeout. From there, DePauw finished the match on a 6-2 run to claim a 15-9 set victory.
Stearley led the Tigers with a double-double, supplying a team-high 18 kills, while adding 18 digs. Kaylee Nichols (Muncie, Ind./Delta) led DePauw with 19 digs while Ally Low (Terre Haute, Ind./North) produced a game-high 53 assists.
DePauw improved to 18-10 on the season and will play North Coast Athletic Conference (NCAC) foe, Wittenberg, in the second round of the tournament. The match is scheduled for Friday, Nov. 9, at 5:30 p.m. at Calvin College.
1ST ROUND: WITTENBERG 3, CARTHAGE 0 (25-17, 25-22, 25-20)
GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. – The Wittenberg Tigers rolled in the opening round of the NCAA Division III Volleyball Tournament, 3-0, over Carthage at Calvin College on Thursday, Nov. 8.
The Tigers opened up the match with a 25-17 set victory before the Athletics tested Wittenberg in set two. The Tigers led 18-9 before an 11-4 run by Carthage closed the gap to 22-20. Kennedey Schmidt (Englewood, Ohio/Northmont) ended the Athletics run with a kill to put the Tigers back up 23-20. Taylor Brown closed out the set with a kill for a 25-22 set victory.
The Tigers opened up the third set with on a 5-0 run before Carthage came back and took an 8-6 lead. The set was tied at 17 before a Katie Hiestand (Canton, Ohio/St. Thomas Aquinas) kill sparked a mini 4-0 run to push Wittenberg’s lead to 21-17. Schmidt would close out the set with a smash, preserving a 25-20 set victory.
Haley Horner (Wheaton, Ill./Wheaton North) and Hiestand led the Tigers in kills with 10 apiece. Karen Wildemann (Columbus, Ind./North) paced Wittenberg in assists (33) while Taylor Brown (Springfield, Ohio/Kenton Ridge) owned a team-high 16 digs.
Wittenberg improved to 24-2 on the season and will play North Coast Athletic Conference (NCAC) foe, DePauw, in the second round of the NCAA Tournament on Friday, Nov. 9, at 5:30 p.m.
SPRINGFIELD, Ohio - Top-seeded Wittenberg (23-2) captured its conference-leading 24th NCAC Volleyball Tournament Title on Saturday, clinching a spot in the NCAA Tournament. DePauw also earned an at-large bid after a 17-10 regular season and NCAC Semifinals appearance.
In the NCAC championship final, Wittenberg claimed a 3-0 victory over Hiram and was led by senior outside hitter Taylor Brown (Springfield, Ohio/Kenton Ridge) who recorded 10 kills, a .588 hitting percentage, eight digs and four blocks. For her efforts throughout the tournament, Brown was named the NCAC Tournament MVP. Senior middle hitter Kennedey Schmidt (Englewood, Ohio/Northmont) and senior setter Karen Wildemann (Columbus, Ind./North) were also named to the all-tournament team for Wittenberg. Hiram sophomore setter Lindsey Walker (Akron, Ohio/St. Vincent St. Mary) and junior outside hitter Madison Fortune (Lorain, Ohio/Clearview) both recorded double-doubles in the tournament finale, as Walker posted 10 kills and 11 digs and Fortune recorded 10 kills and 10 digs.
As tournament champions, Wittenberg received the NCAC's automatic bid into the 2018 NCAA Division III Volleyball Tournament. The Tigers will face Carthage (21-10), who received an at-large bid after finishing as the College Conference of Illinois and Wisconsin (CCIW) runner-ups in the regular season and tournament. DePauw (17-10) will take on the Hope (25-7) in the first round. The Flying Dutch are making their 15th NCAA Tournament, winning the 2014 NCAA Div. III National Title. DePauw is making its eighth appearance overall including each of the last three seasons. Both first-round games will be at Calvin College on Thursday, Nov. 8.