Trio of volleyball athletes earn MAC West Player of the Week honors


Freshman setter/outside hitter Kendall Braate sets the ball on Saturday, Sept. 22 in McGuirk Arena. 

It was a very successful weekend for Central Michigan volleyball. 

The team improved their record to 10-2 with a 3-0 performance at the Youngstown State Red & White Invitational, and Kalina Smith was recognized with tournament MVP. 

Three other Chippewas were recognized for their performance by the Mid-American Conference. 

Megan Kern, a senior libero from La Grange, Illinois, was named MAC West Defensive Player of the Week. Over the weekend, Kern totaled 78 digs over three matches. 

"Meg has been a defensive staple for our program all four years of her career," said coach Mike Gawlik. "It's great to see her hard work recognized."

Two Chippewas also earned Co-Setter of the Week honors. The award is split between junior Grace Butler and sophomore Kendall Braate. 

Braate, who hails from Byron Center, Michigan, had 70 assists. Butler, a native of Hawthorn Woods, Illinois, had 53. It is the first time either has won the award this season. 

"Grace and Kendall have been doing a great job of making good decisions and bettering the ball to put us in a position to attack," said Gawlik of his two setters.

"When your first contact (Kern) and second contact (Butler and Braate) are good, it's likely your team will find success," said Gawlik. 

The Chippewas next take the court Sept. 27 at Northern Illinois.