Sunday, Nov. 12, 2017, 2 pm - Rike Center, Westerville, Ohio - NCAA III Tournament Regional Finals
Sunday's contest is a Regional Finals match in the NCAA III Tournament. The winner advances to the 8-team NCAA Championships next weekend at Grand Rapids, Mich.
How They Got Here
Ohio Northern reached the Regional Finals with a thrilling 25-19, 25-19, 17-25, 25-27, 17-15 victory over DePauw (Ind.) and a 25-21, 25-23, 25-15 victory over #25 Otterbein in the first two rounds. #3 Wittenberg swept Penn State-Behrend 25-10, 25-17, 25-11 and downed #19 Juniata (Pa.) 25-10, 13-25, 25-23, 25-21.
Ohio Northern in 2017
The Polar Bears received an at-large bid to the NCAA III Tournament with a 29-5 overall record. Ohio Northern shared the OAC Regular Season title with an 8-1 record and reached the finals of the OAC Tournament by defeating Marietta and Mount Union and falling at league-co-champ Otterbein in the finals.
NCAA Tournament Appearances
Ohio Northern has the advantage in NCAA Tournament experience, making its 30th appearance in the 37 years of the tournament's existence. The Polar Bears have amassed a 37-29 record in its previous 29 trips, including a trip to the NCAA Semifinals in 2008 and a Runner-Up finish in 1989. OU making its fifth appearance in the NCAA's after four straight showings from 2010-13.
Polar Bears v the Tournament Field
Ohio Northern has an 8-5 record against teams that are competing in the NCAA III Tournament this year. ONU has defeated Thomas More (Ky.), DePauw (Ind.) (twice), Aurora (Ill.), Washington (Mo.), Clarkson (N.Y.), Hanover (Ind.) and Otterbein and have lost to Carnegie Mellon (Pa.), Illinois Wesleyan, Wittenberg and Otterbein (twice).
ONU Individual Accolades
Five Polar Bears were named All-Ohio Athletic Conferece in 2017. Freshman S Katie Wade was named the OAC Freshman of the Year; senior L Megan Nieszala and sophomore MH Chelsea Huppert were named First Team All-OAC; sophomore OH McKenna Jordan and Wade were named Second Team All-OAC and senior MH Haley Potters was named Honorable Mention All-OAC. Nieszala and Huppert were named All-Great Lakes Region and Wade was named the Great Lakes Region Freshman of the Year.
NCAA Statistical Leaders
Ohio Northern is ranked 7th nationally with an average of 13.65 kills per set and is 9th nationally with an average of 12.79 assists per set and 2.12 blocks per set. Individually, freshman S Katie Wade ranks 5th nationally in assists per set at 11.12 and sophomore MH Chelsea Huppert is 23rd in blocks per set at 1.09 bps.
ONU Statistical Leaders:
All-Time Series: ONU leads the all-time series between the two schools by a 32-27 margin. ONU is 5-6 against Wittenberg in the NCAA Tournament.
Head Coach Kate Witte: Witte is in her 27th season as head coach with a 693-226 record, a winning percentage of .754 ... She is the all-time winningest coach in ONU volleyball history. She has posted a 24-19 record (.558) during her tenure in the NCAA Tournament, including a trip to the NCAA Semifinals in 2008.