Heading into the final week Ohio State and Loyola Chicago were even atop the MIVA standings, and both lost once this past week to secure a tie at the top. While they share the crown and get the #1 and #2 seed, Ball State crept up to just a match behind both with wins over the top two, creating for a great race – especially when adding in that the fourth through sixth place teams are ranked – in the MPSF Tournament coming this weekend.
With new story-lines emerging and a new season of sorts in league play commencing, VolleyMob will be giving conference updates. Below is analysis as well as the weekly MIVA table, awards, matches of the week and power rankings:
|#6 Ohio State||11-3||20-5|
|#7 Loyola Chicago||11-3||21-6|
|#10 Ball State||10-4||17-11|
|#13 Fort Wayne||6-8||18-10|
MATCHES OF THE WEEK:
- April 14: MIVA Quarterfinals
- Quincy at #6 Ohio State
- #19 McKendree at #10 Ball State
- Lindenwood at #7 Loyola Chicago
- #13 Fort Wayne at #9 Lewis
VOLLEYMOB MIVA POWER RANKINGS:
- Ohio State
- Loyola Chicago
- Ball State
- Fort Wayne
NO BANANA, BUT THERE IS A SPLIT
- #6 Ohio State & #7 Loyola Chicago
Loyola Chicago surprisingly was upset by Lindenwood and it seemed like Ohio State would coast to the regular season title outright. However, Ohio State was also upended by Ball State on the road in five sets, and the Ramblers still got a share of things. That doesn’t change the fact that the Buckeyes got the 1-seed though, meaning an easier first round match to allow advancing to the semifinal round where the highest remaining seed will host. That’s big time for Ohio State, who is 10-1 at home this season against 9-4 on the road while Loyola Chicago’s splits are even more drastic at 6-4 on the road (and 0-1 on neutral court) opposed to 15-1 at home.
NOT TOO FAR OFF
- #10 Ball State & #9 Lewis
Although Ball State and Lewis didn’t earn a share of the title, they proved over the course of the season that they aren’t too far behind Ohio State and Loyola Chicago. In fact, Ball State earned wins over both this season, while Lewis took down the Buckeyes once. The importance is that now in a one-match-elimination style tournament, they’ve proven they can take down the top dogs on any given night. Assuming they can take care of business against ranked quarterfinals opponents, Lewis would take on Ohio State while Ball State would face Loyola Chicago. So that would be put to the test, but it really seems that either of these schools could play spoiler and while it might be a bit surprising it would by no means be outlandish.