Section: Sports

Ladies volleyball spikes to the top of NCAC with three sweeps

The Ladies emerged victorious from their first official volleyball match of the season with a 3-1 win against the Capital University Crusaders (Bexley, Ohio). Since then, the team has continued to find success, and the Ladies now stand at 4-1 (NCAC 0-0).

“The mental toughness of the team was a high point,” Schuyler Stupica ’19 said.

“There weren’t any lulls in the game. Everyone on the court was really focused the entire time.”

Stupica was key to the team’s success, recording nine kills and four block solos against Capital (3-3). Delaney Swanson ’19, a top offensive player in the North Coast Athletic Conference (NCAC), scored over 12 kills, including one ace.

Swanson is definitely one to watch this season: She is currently ranked fourth in the conference for kills; she scored 333 last year and averaged 4.2 points per set, good for third in the conference.

The Ladies’ success has continued since the opener. On Saturday, the Ladies suffered their only loss so far, a 3-0 defeat to Case Western Reserve University (4-0; Cleveland) in the Capital / Otterbein Invitational.

Also at the invitational, Kenyon collected wins over Ohio Christian University (3-5; Circleville, Ohio) and Otterbein University (3-1; Westerville, Ohio). Rachael Thorson ’18 was offered a spot on the All-Tournament team, ending the invitational on a high note.

Kenyon won once more over Wilmington College (0-2; Wilmington, Ohio) on Tuesday, their third sweep of the season.

The team is excited to welcome three new first years to the team’s rank of 20: Mackenzie Bruzzio, Haley Witschey and Maleah Miller. Having graduated only a single player last year, the team consists largely of experienced returners. Bruzzio and Miller play in the starting lineup this year and are succeeding in their roles. Miller scored seven kills in the most recent game against Wilmington.

Head Coach Amanda Krampf is impressed by the dedication and hard work of the girls, who train two to three hours a day, every day of the week. Krampf said “continuing to work hard together and to stay consistent through every single match” will be this season’s focus.

Last season, the team entered the NCAC Tournament as the sixth seed. Though still consistently beating teams with higher rankings, the Ladies have never advanced past the tournament’s first round. Last season was the team’s first winning season since 1990.

Krampf hopes this year will extend the team’s momentum.

“We are looking forward to starting where we finished off last year, and being able to make a big statement in the conference and being a little more successful in that tournament,” Krampf said.

The Ladies play their next match on Friday against Geneva College (1-0; Beaver Falls, Pa.) at the Bluffton Sommer Center Spiketacular in Bluffton, Ohio.

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