Seven of the eight host institutions won, including two in five-sets on night one of the NIVC Tournament. In total, seven of the 16 matches went the distance.
UNI claimed the school’s 17th tourney title and first since 2011 with a 3-1 win over second seed Illinois State Saturday in the Missouri Valley Conference Tournament.
The last time there were two five set matches on the same day of the MVC Tournament was in the 2008 semifinals. This year, No. 6 seed Drake upset No. 3 Bradley, while Valparaiso defeated Missouri State.
Co-champion UNI middle blocker Piper Thomas took home the MVC’s Player of the Year honors, while Bradley’s Hannah Thompson earned the conference’s Freshman of the Year award. Illinois State’s Courtney Pence earned the league’s Libero of the Year honor, while her Redbird teammate Stef Jankiewicz was tabbed Setter of the Year.
There were two monster performances that stood out above the rest, but an all around effort and two conference records gave Cincinnati’s Jordan Thompson the edge and her third VolleyMob Player of the Week nod this season.
Since entering Missouri Valley Conference play UNI, which is receiving votes in this week’s VolleyMob power rankings, has been on a roll. The Panthers are a perfect 6-0 in conference play, followed by Valparaiso and Illinois State, which stand at 5-1.
After leading No. 7 Minnesota past No. 3 Wisconsin and Indiana in sweeps, senior setter Samantha Seliger-Swenson has been selected as the VolleyMob Player of the Week.
This week’s Missouri Valley Conference Players of the Week are UNI’s Piper Thomas, Bradley’s Yavianliz Rosado, and Missouri State’s Chloe Rear.
This week’s Missouri Valley Conference Players of the Week are Loyola’s Elle Van Grinsven, Bradley’s Yavianliz Rosado and Bradley’s Hannah Thompson.