West Liberty Volleyball wins 2 more; winning streak hits 5

West Liberty Volleyball collects another two wins against Alderson Broaddus and Frostburg State putting them at five straight wins. This is their longest winning streak of the season and likely contributed to their recent number nine NCAA Division II Atlantic Region ranking. This ranking ties the program high ranking reached by the 2018 volleyball team.

The Lady Toppers have taken the past five games with commanding wins. Two wins were accomplished in 3-1 games, and the other three wins in 3-0 games.

One of these 3-1 matches occurred on Tuesday night against Alderson Broaddus. West Liberty took the first set 25-21. Then, Alderson Broaddus turned the tables, winning the next set 21-25. That was their only win however, as the Hilltoppers ran away with the next two sets, 25-16 and 25-14, respectively.

The middles dominated the net with Madison Clayton leading the Toppers with 16 kills and 10 blocks, while Nina Billotto followed with eight kills and four blocks. Then, Riley Cudnik, highschool middle turned college outside, snagged six kills and three blocks.

On the other side of the stats sheet, Libero Nyia Setla racked up a team high of 20 digs followed by Kirsten Bogunovich and Jenna Caskey with 13 and 11 digs, respectively. Bogunovich and Setla also made the top three for team high assists at 29 and four, respectively, with freshman Haley Zeck coming in the middle with eight assists.

Friday night, the Lady Toppers traveled to Maryland to secure a win against Frostburg State. The girls dominated three straight sets with scores of 25-16, 25-15, 25-16. This game brings the Hilltoppers up to a 10-4 record in the MEC and 19-11 overall.

The pin hitters took over this match with outside Katelynn Fritz collecting a team high 13 kills, and outside Cudnik following with 10 kills. Right side hitter and setter, Bogunovich, brought up third with eight kills. Bogunovich also led the team in aces, followed by Fritz with four and three respectively. Setters, Bogunovich and Zeck, tied for team high assists at 20 each, and Fritz earned another team high with a whopping 25 digs. Setla followed her with 20 digs and then Zeck and Laura Gamel with nine and six, respectively.

Head coach, Riley Schenk, attributes these big wins to her girls’ team mentality. She said, “our team is playing very well collectively right now. We’ve really stressed all season, it needs to be a team effort.” Schenk also said that “the little things” are starting to click together on the court which is aiding in the team’s success.

The Lady Toppers have only one more week of conference play, where they will go against two previous losses, Fairmont State and Wheeling University. These games will determine their seeding in the MEC tournament which will take place the following week.

As the tournament closes in, Schenk had this to say, “The MEC tournament is a huge deal, and I feel very confident in this group. We have come on strong towards the end when it’s most important… [every team] comes in 0-0 in the tournament… [so] it is anyone’s game.”

The MEC Tournament will take place from Thursday, Nov. 18 to Saturday, Nov. 20. For more information on the Hilltoppers upcoming games or the MEC Tournament, visit HilltopperSports.com.