GEORGETOWN, Ky. – The No. 20-ranked Indiana Wesleyan University volleyball team compiled an impressive list of victories this weekend following a perfect 4-0 run at the Boneyard Brawl in Georgetown, Kentucky.
After a pair of wins on Friday, Indiana Wesleyan defeated Shawnee State (Ohio) University 3-0 and Freed-Hardeman (Tenn.) University 3-1 on Saturday. Indiana Wesleyan defeated Shawnee State 25-7, 25-17, 27-25 and concluded the tournament with a four game win over Freed-Hardeman 25-18, 21-25, 25-20, 25-20.
"We're peaking right at the right time," said Indiana Wesleyan head coach Candace Moats. "We believe right now, we're playing for each other, and we're playing for the Lord. It's a special team and a special time."
The Wildcats did not pick up four wins against less than stellar competition this weekend either. The four teams held a combined 82-30 record and three teams already accumulated at least 20 wins this season.
"We were pretty focused on the Indiana Tech match coming in but I was really proud of the girls for their focus on every match," continued Moats. "In the Walsh game Friday I thought we played really well. The Indiana Tech game was an outstanding performance. We were focused and excited to play them all. It brought more energy to our team."
What Indiana Wesleyan did not expect when the tournament began was to face an extremely hot team in Freed-Hardeman.
"Freed-Hardeman was 3-0 this weekend before we played them and they just killed people. It ended up being a significant win for us," added Moats. "Freed-Hardeman is a good team."
"They definitely should be ranked and maybe after this weekend they will. They beat three very good teams in Olivet Nazarene (Ill.), Georgetown (Ky.) and Indiana Tech. Against us, they battled like crazy because they were the underdog. It was a very good win for us."
Indiana Wesleyan improves their own record to 29-4 this season and has won 11 straight. IWU has won 23 of its 24 matches dating back to September 9.
Senior libero Kelsey Masuda and junior setter Yui Iwase were unanimously selected to the Boneyard Brawl All-Tournament Team. Masuda finished the weekend with 97 digs as she averaged 6.9 digs per game. Iwase collected 149 assists at the tournament and 36 digs. She had an average of 12.4 assists per game.
Indiana Wesleyan had little trouble in the morning match with Shawnee State and all the Wildcats got to play.
Sophomore middle hitter Kristine Egebrecht led all players with nine kills and sported a .400 hitting percentage while freshman middle hitter Cheyenne Godinez contributed five kills and a .364 percentage. As a team, Indiana Wesleyan hit .250.
Freshman setter Christi Benting assisted on 26 kills in two games while Iwase earned 14 assists in just one game.
Defensively, Indiana Wesleyan blocked six Shawnee State attacks. Benting had a pair of solo blocks and one block assist. Masuda earned 25 digs to lead all players.
In the tournament finale versus Freed-Hardeman, Iwase picked up a double-double with 43 assists and 11 digs. Senior outside hitter Kate Denlinger had a match-high 18 kills along with a .375 attacking percentage. Senior middle hitter Lauryn Barfell added 13 kills with a .393 hitting percentage.
Barfell also helped the Wildcat defense with two solo blocks and four block assists. IWU totaled nine blocks in the win. Four Wildcats tallied double digit digs. Masuda earned 23, sophomore defensive specialist Rebecca Brandes had 11, as did Iwase, and junior defensive specialist Jordan Sudzina added 10.
Indiana Wesleyan will finish their regular season this upcoming week with a pair of Mid-Central College Conference matches. IWU will travel to Bethel (Ind.) College on Wednesday, November 2 and then host Taylor (Ind.) University at 7 p.m. on Friday, November 4.