Volleyball goes 1-1 on day one of Chippewa Invitational


Senior outside hitter Taylor Robertson, left, and sophomore middle blocker Jayla Wesley, right, jump to stop the ball  at the CMU Volleyball game against Western Michigan on Nov. 4 in McGuirk Arena.

In day one of of the 2018 Chippewa invitational, the Central Michigan volleyball team split its first two games of their home debut defeating La Salle 3-1 and falling 3-0 against DePaul.

Game One: CMU 3, La Salle 1

Game one against La Salle (1-4) earned the Chippewas (2-3) their first home victory of the 2018 season as CMU topped the explorers 25-22, 19-25, 25-23, 25-16. Sophomore Kalina Smith led CMU with 14 kills in the game, just ahead of freshman Savannah Thompson who finished with 13.

In addition, sophomore Lyza Myers and freshman Maddie Whitfield each recorded 10 kills for CMU rounding out a total of four Chippewas with double digit kills.

Head coach Mike Gawlik was pleased with the balanced attack from his hitters in the first game of the tournament, emphasizing the importance of keeping the defense on its toes.

"Anytime you can have a lot of people contribute you will be very difficult to defend," said head coach Mike Gawlik. "Without a doubt that kind of balance is going to serve us well moving forward."

Freshman setter Kendall Braate finished with 22 assists in the win, without a single recorded error. 

Game 2

Despite the hot start in the first game against La Salle, CMU came out sluggish against DePaul falling in three sets 3-0. 

In set one, DePaul handed CMU their worst set loss of the season with a 25-10 victory. CMU recovered in sets two and three, but not enough to push past the blue demons falling 22-25 in the second set and 21-25 in the third. 

"We started off doing some really good things against LaSalle," Gawlik said. "Against DePaul I feel like we didn't share the load a whole lot and I feel like there was a lot of elements of our game that we left on the table."

CMU finished the game with an abysmal 10.7 hitting percentage along with 24 errors, more than double than that commited by DePaul.

One final game remains for the Chippewas to round out the Chippewa Invitational as they take on Valparaiso at 3:30 p.m. on Saturday in McGuirk arena.  The Crusaders enter Saturday with a record of 5-1 and has not lost a game yet in the tournament yet.