Volleyball senior setter Kelly Maxwell was on the court despite being questionable after missing the last weekend and not traveling with the team.
She was assessed throughout the week and cleared to play by head coach Erik Olson and she lead her team to the 3-0 sweep against at Eastern Michigan on Thursday.
Going into the match, the Chippewas had just one Mid-American Conference victory and was in need of a road win against the Eagles and they got it behind a dominate block up front which record 12 blocks in the match.
“We worked on blocking a lot this week and our middle blockers certainly made a difference for us,” Olson said.
In Maxwell’s return, the Chippewas started off by falling behind the early, With EMU having the lead for the majority of the first set, it seemed as if the Eagles were in control but CMU came together late in the set to take it, 25-22. The team started off the second set just as they finished the first, with momentum. At one point leading 11-4 and finishing with another 25-22 win.
From being down five to bringing the score to a tie match at 13, EMU did not give up. In the end however, the Chippewas proved to be too much, winning the final set, 25-21.
Graduate student outside hitter Katie Schuette was dominate in the match, leading the team with 12 kills and a .348 hitting percentage.
“We had a great outside match tonight,” Olson said. “I thought Katie Schuette was phenomenal, and we really passed the ball around well.”
The offense was a strength for the Chippewas. Olson saw his team come together, stretching the score gap to make sure their inner-state opponent could not come back and extend the Chippewas MAC three-match losing streak.
Maxwell had 35 assists, while senior libero Jenna Coates proved to be a pain for EMU throughout the match on the defensive end with nine digs, while junior outside hitter Kaitlyn McIntyre showed her defensive skills with a team-high 17 digs. Schuette also added 12 digs to go along with the team-high 12 kills.
“I think they (Eastern) had a specific game plan to keep the ball away from Jenna Coates, so we made them change their game plan,” Olson said.
Now CMU looks ahead to this weekend where it will return home to McGurirk Arena to take on the Golden Flashes who are 9-9 and 3-2 in MAC play and they rank near the bottom of the conference with a .208 hitting percentage, while the Chippewas are hitting .230.
The match is at 7 p.m. Saturday.