No. 20 Volleyball cruises into Third Round of NCAA Div. III Tournament with 3-0 sweep of Otterbein

No. 20 Volleyball cruises into Third Round of NCAA Div. III Tournament with 3-0 sweep of Otterbein

By Caleb Scott

| NCAA III Tournament Page | ONU's Post-Match Press Conference video |

WESTERVILLE — The No. 20-ranked Ohio Northern volleyball team saw its season move onto the Third Round of the NCAA Div. III Tournament on Saturday evening as it swept Ohio Athletic Conference-foe and No. 25-ranked Otterbein 3-0 at the Rike Center.

The Polar Bears improve to 29-5 overall, while the Cardinals season concludes with a 30-5 record.

Sophomores McKenna Jordan (Toledo/St. Ursula) and Chelsea Huppert (Bremen, Ind.) shined for the Polar Bears as the duo led the way offensively and defensively.

Jordan led all spikers with a game-high 18 kills, while hitting a blistering .567, and Huppert tallied 14 kills (.481 hitting percentage) and recorded a game-high four blocks. Jordan also added two blocks for the Polar Bear defense. 

Freshman Katie Wade (Battle Creek, Mich./Harper Creek) recorded a double-double with a game-high 44 assists and 12 digs, while senior Megan Nieszala (Lambertville, Mich./St. Marys Catholic Central) posted a game-high 17 digs for ONU.

The first set remained tight until ONU used a 4-0 run led by two kills from Huppert and kills from sophomore Sydney Bapst (Grove City) and junior Josie Andres (Sunman, Ind./East Central) to break a 17-all tie and take a 21-17 lead.

The Cardinals would close the gap to 21-19, before ONU went on the claim the first set 25-21.

After faling behind 18-16 in the second set, Northern used a 5-0 spurt fueled by two kills from Jordan to regain the lead.

OU would cut the deficit to 24-23 before Huppert put the set away with a kill to give Northern a commanding 2-0 lead in the match.

After falling in a 4-1 hole in the final set, Northern responded by scoring seven straight points to take an early 8-4 lead.

Northern would hold a sizeable lead throughout the set before four consecutive kills would close the contest out and help Northern move on in the NCAA III Tournament.

The Polar Bears will return to the court on Sunday, Nov. 12 at 2 pm as they take on No. 3-ranked Wittenberg in the third round of the NCAA Div. III Tournament.