Volleyball overwhelms Kent State for bounce-back win


The Chippewas volleyball team fell to Miami 3-2 March 27, 2021 in McGuirk Arena. 

Ready for war, Central Michigan volleyball went down to Kent, Ohio, and dismantled Kent State en route to a 3-1 win on Friday.

The Chippewas improve to 8-9 on the season and 2-3 in the Mid-American Conference. KSU falls to 6-11 and 1-4 in the conference.

“I thought we played a real gritty match,” said head coach Mike Gawlik. “All in all, I thought it was just good attention to detail. We just out fought them for those 50/50 rallies.”

How it happened

By controlling the net and capitalizing on CMU mistakes, the Golden Flashes jumped ahead in the first set. However, after breaking through the 15 point mark first, Kent State struggled to keep the Chippewas offense down. Although they were fighting an uphill battle, CMU began to break the Golden Flashes. With KSU leading 23-21, the Chippewas went on a run which freshman outside hitter Linnea Willer capped off in devastating fashion to secure set one 25-23.

Fired up and carrying the momentum, the Chippewas battled their way to a 12-9 lead over KSU in set two. The Golden Flashes fought back, tying it at 12, but CMU wasn’t letting up. Sophomore middle blocker Elly Medendorp led the charge for the Chippewas, recording three kills as part of a CMU run to an 18-13 lead. KSU tried to mount another comeback, but the Chippewas stayed on the gas, bringing home the second set 25-19.

Looking to turn the tides of the match, the Golden Flashes brought the house in the third set. Although the Chippewas took an early advantage, KSU stormed back establishing a 15-10 lead. With the Golden Flashes scrambling, CMU rallied to tie it at 17 off of a tremendous heads-up kill by freshman Lauren Schrock. Following a KSU timeout, Schrock gave the Chippewas the lead, but the Golden Flashes came out on top in the third set 25-21.

Controlling the pace, KSU took an early lead, but the Chippewas fought back. With the Golden Flashes up 19-18, senior middle blocker Lisbeth Rosario-Martinez took control. Rosario-Martinez buried the ball past the KSU defense to tie it at 19, which senior outside hitter Savannah Thompson followed with an accurate shot to give CMU the lead. Rosario-Martinez and Thompson each picked up another kill as the Chippewas took the fourth set 25-23.

Key Performers

Thompson led the way for the Chippewas with 14 kills and 21digs. 

Sophomore setter Kamryn Olson led the way offensively for CMU with 30 assists. Senior setter Grace Butler added 24 assists. Rosario Martinez helped bolster the offense with 13 kills.

Freshman Aly Gurtiza continued to lead the Chippewas defense, finishing with 28 digs.

Key Stats

CMU won the assists battle by five, but the Flashes finished with four more totals blocks.

What’s Next

The Chippewas wrap up their road trip on Saturday, Oct. 9, when they face Ohio in Athens at 1:30 p.m.