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Ryley Wilcox
Ryley Wilcox
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I found my passion for journalism during my sophomore year of college, writing articles here and there for the North Wind. Since joining the staff this past semester as the news writer, I have been able...

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The North Wind is an independent student publication serving the Northern Michigan University community. It is partially funded by the Student Activity Fee. The North Wind digital paper is published daily during the fall and winter semesters except on university holidays and during exam weeks. The North Wind Board of Directors is composed of representatives of the student body, faculty, administration and area media.

Students protest against Israel-Hamas war with campus encampment
Students protest against Israel-Hamas war with campus encampment
Dallas WiertellaApril 30, 2024

’Cats win on the road

The NMU volleyball ’Cats went to the net this weekend with redemption on their mind, winning three out of four matches at the Missouri S&T Middle of Everywhere Classic.

The Wildcats returned from a loss against Minnesota-Duluth last Tuesday, splitting their victory on Friday and winning both matches on Saturday. NMU defeated Emporia State, 3-2, (16-25, 25-23, 16-25, 25-21 and 15-8.) The ’Cats lost their second match this season against Missouri S&T, 3-1, with scores of 25-23, 18-25, 25-22 and 25-20.

NMU head coach Dominic Yoder said how the team played was a step in the right direction.

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“The team played very well, especially blocking and serving,” Yoder said. “We had real scrappy play with tons of heart to win three five-set matches.”

The ’Cats opened the weekend against Emporia State with victory in mind. Four players scored at least 10 kills and the team had 12 team blocks versus Emporia’s eight.

Leading NMU with 13 kills was junior left-middle hitter Kalli Herron, followed closely by junior middle hitter Sarah Hamilton with 12. Herron said she concentrated on paying attention to any openings the other team offered.

“I mainly focused on what I had available for me with my different hits and the defense did a really good job at telling us what shots were open while we were hitting,” Herron said. “Blocking also was a huge key for us this weekend.”

Other ’Cats with kill counts at 10 were junior left-side hitter Lina Lopes and freshman left-side hitter Lisa Studnicka.

Junior setter Kellisha Harley kept the offense strong with 46 assists and five block assists.

Freshman defensive specialist Alex Berger contributed to the team with 13 digs while Harley followed closely with 10. Hamilton also had 10 block assists.

Harley said the matches helped the team discover new strategies to success.

“We found some new strengths this past weekend, so I’m very excited to keep utilizing them and seeing what else is there,” Harley said. “We may get into ruts sometimes, but it’s awesome to be able to push through them and come back on top. That requires 100 percent on every ball and every point.”

Moving on into Friday evening against Missouri S&T, NMU put up a strong fight for all four sets, winning one.

Studnicka led the offense this time with 16 kills and four service aces, while Herron was right behind her with 11.

Harley set up 42 assists for her teammates. In terms of digs, Berger maintained consistency with 10, also contributing four service aces.

Although the first day ended in defeat for the ’Cats, the team returned fire on Saturday against Southern Indiana and Missouri-St. Louis.

The team finished the weekend strong, defeating both Southern Indiana and Missouri-St. Louis, 3-2.

NMU started the morning match versus Southern Indiana by losing the first set, 19-25, but came back with vengeance, scoring 25-15, 25-22, 23-25 and 15-10.

Leading the team offensively was Lopes and Herron, Lopes with 14 digs. Lopes and Herron each scored 16 kills.

Studnicka remained a force with 14 kills, while Harley helped the team with 14 digs and 47 assists.

Defensively, Berger set the bar with 21 digs. Overall against Southern Indiana, NMU contributed 17 team blocks, Hamilton with 10 block assists and Herron with eight. Freshman middle-hitter Alexis Nelson also helped with five block assists and a solo block.

Going into the evening match against Missouri-St. Louis, Studnicka once again proved her offensive ability with 18 kills.

Herron was right behind her with 17, with Lopes bringing 16 to the table. Harley again increased her number of assists, adding 50 assists and 12 digs.

Leading the team in digs once more was Berger with 18, while Studnicka contributed 14. Senior Kalin Zimmerman had 12 digs.

NMU finished the weekend 3-1 and is now 7-2 overall. The team prepares to begin conference matches with next week’s play against Saginaw Valley and Lake Superior State.

The ’Cats will hit the road this weekend. At 7 p.m. Friday, Sept. 14 they face Saginaw Valley and at 2 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 15 they face Lake Superior State to start GLIAC games.

The Saginaw Valley Cardinals are 4-5 on the season while the Lake Superior State University Lakers are 3-5.

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