No. 20 Volleyball claims share of Ohio Athletic Conference title with 3-0 sweep over Marietta

No. 20 Volleyball claims share of Ohio Athletic Conference title with 3-0 sweep over Marietta

By Caleb Scott

MARIETTA — The No. 20-ranked Ohio Northern volleyball claimed at least a share of the Ohio Athletic Conference regular season title on Friday evening as it defeated Marietta 3-0 at Ban Johnson Arena.

The Polar Bears improve to 25-4 overall and 8-1 in the Ohio Athletic Conference, while the Pioneers fall to 11-17, 3-6.

Northern owns at least a share of the Ohio Athletic Conference and one of the top two seeds in next weeks OAC Tournament.

ONU can claim the No. 1 seed throughout the OAC Tournament with an Otterbein loss to Mount Union on Saturday afternoon.

Sophomore McKenna Jordan (Toledo/St. Ursula) led the Polar Bears offensively as she recorded 13 kills.

Sophomore Chelsea Huppert (Bremen, Ind.) chipped in nine kills, while hitting a game-best .474.

Freshman Katie Wade (Battle Creek, Mich./Harper Creek) dished out a game-high 30 assists and recorded her 15th double-double of the season with 10 digs.

Sophomore McKenna Hostetler (Plain City/Alder) had a team-best 16 digs, while senior Megan Nieszala (Lambertville, Mich./St. Marys Catholic Central) added 11 digs.

In the first set, Northern jumped out to a commanding 10-1 lead before Marietta responded with a 4-1 run to cut the gap to 11-5.

After taking a 21-11 lead, ONU closed the set out on 4-0 run to take a 1-0 lead in the match.

In the second set, the Polar Bears broke a 7-7 tie with a 5-0 run led by two kills from senior Haley Potters (Wheelersburg/South Webster) and a kill from Jordan to take a 12-7 lead.

Marietta would keep it close as they pulled within 20-19, before the Northern defense forced four Pioneer miscues to help ONU claim set two 25-19.

The third set proved to be a back-and-forth battle early, before Jordan recorded three kills to lead a 7-1 run and push a Northern lead to 14-7.

The Polar Bears would go on to take the final set 25-16 to complete the 3-0 sweep.

With a top-2 seed in the OAC Tournament, Northern will host a quarterfinal round on Tuesday evening at 7 pm, with the opponent of the match to be determined on Saturday afternoon after the conclusion of the OAC regular season.