Volleyball stands tall, ends winless drought


Tyler Young

The Northern Michigan University Volleyball team split a pair of GLIAC matchups this past weekend, falling 3-2 to the University of Wisconsin-Parkside on Friday before breaking their five game losing streak with a 3-0 sweep of Purdue Northwest on Saturday.

Friday’s game against Parkside was one in which the Wildcats got off to a slow start, as the Rangers won sets one and two by scores of 25-18 and 25-15, respectively. NMU responded well, winning the third set 25-15 and riding that momentum to a 25-19 win in the fourth set to knot the match up at two sets apiece. The deciding fifth set was extremely closely contested, but it was the hosts that came away with the 16-14 win and the 3-2 match victory.

Senior outside hitter Maggie Liebeck paced the Wildcats offensively with 13 kills, while senior setter Lynzi Svoboda finished the match with 38 assists and 3 aces to her credit. Defensively, it was senior defensive specialist Rachel Braunschweig who led NMU with 23 digs.

On Saturday, the Wildcats took on the Purdue Northwest Pride in an attempt to snap a five game losing skid. The opening set began with the Pride taking an early lead, but the Wildcats fought back and eventually took a 25-17 victory. The second set was another close one, with the teams battling back and forth to a 13-13 deadlock before NMU was able to pull away toward a 25-19 win. Northern had much more control of the third set from the beginning and eventually took a 25-19 set victory and a 3-0 sweep of the match.

Junior defensive specialist Gabriela Martinez finished the match with a career-high 5 aces, which accounted for half of NMU’s season-best team total of 10. Senior outside hitter Autumn Monsma led the Wildcats offensively with 9 kills, and Braunschweig again was the top NMU defender with 20 digs.

After the weekend’s results, the Wildcats sit at an 11-8 overall record and are 3-8 in conference play. Their record has them tied for eighth place in the GLIAC.

NMU will take a brief hiatus from GLIAC play this weekend as they head to the Midwest Region Volleyball Crossover in Indianapolis, with their first game coming at 2:30 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 12, against the Cedarville University Yellow Jackets.