Entornointeligente.com / National men’s volleyballer, Daynte Stewart had a joint team-high ten kills as the 11th ranked Indiana Tech men’s volleyball team ended the 2021 Wolverine-Hoosier Athletic Conference (WHAC) regular-season on a high note by sweeping Siena Heights University 25-20, 26-24, 25-19 on at the Schaefer Center, Fort Wayne, Indiana, USA last Thursday.
With the win, Indiana Tech and Lourdes University, which were stunned by Aquinas on Saturday in their final match (25-22, 19-25, 20-25, 21-25) ended the regular-season both with 10-2 league records has to settle as joint conference champions.
Lourdes and Indiana Tech split during the season and Indiana Tech had an early loss to Siena Heights.
The championship came down to the final match on Saturday where Aquinas upset the Gray Wolves for their second loss.
It’s the second championship for Lourdes after winning the inaugural season in 2019 and the first for Indiana Tech. There was no champion named last year due to the season not being able to be completed because of the coronavirus (COVID-19).
Goshen and Siena Heights tied for third with 7-5 WHAC records while Mount Vernon Nazarene and Aquinas tied for fifth at 4-8. First-year program Cornerstone finished 0-12.
Indiana Tech ended the regular season with an overall win-loss record of 15-4 while Lourdes finished 12-2 going into the WHAC semifinals on Friday.
In the semifinals, Indiana Tech comes up against Siena College from 4 pm, while Lourdes faces Goshen three hours later on Friday for places in the final on Saturday at Lourdes will host the Championship at the Russell J. Ebeid Recreation Center.
Since Lourdes and Indiana Tech tied for the regular-season title with 10-2 WHAC records, a tiebreaker procedure of percentage of sets won in head-to-head competition was used. Lourdes, the 2019 tournament champion, took the tiebreaker with .570 sets to take the top seed. In its first tournament appearance, Indiana Tech sits as the second seed.
After tying for third place with 7-5 records, Siena Heights gets the third seed over Goshen based on the same tiebreaker as above. SHU won .560 of its sets against Goshen to be seeded third for the second time in tournament history. Goshen is making its first appearance in the tournament.
The tournament winner receives the league’s automatic berth to the NAIA Men’s Volleyball National Championship April 19-24 in Des Moines, Iowa. Local and state spectator guidelines will be followed and capacity is limited to approximately 150.
On Thursday, Tech got out to a 7-1 lead in the first set to force an early timeout from the Saints and never looked back as they led wire-to-wire in the opening set.
Siena Heights used a 4-0 run to cut the deficit to 15-14, but Tech responded with a 5-1 run to hold the lead before eventually taking the set 25-20.
The Saints came out with the momentum in the second as they took a 10-4 lead to start and used a 6-0 spurt to make it a 17-7 game.
The Warriors would not go down quietly though and started to chip away at the deficit with a 4-0 run that put them down just 22-20. The visitors took the next two points to get to the set point, but the Orange and Black responded with a 6-0 spurt to snatch the 2-0 lead.
The third set saw the Saints control the action early with an 11-7 lead, but a 5-0 run from the Warriors put them up 12-11.
Tech grew the lead to 19-14 and finished out the match with a 3-0 run and a block from Chase Christiansen to complete the sweep.
In addition to Stewart, Mason Milan also spiked ten kills for Indiana Tech while the T&T international also added three blocks and five digs.
FINAL WHAC TEAM STANDINGS
1st. Lourdes (10-2)
1st. Indiana Tech (10-2)
3rd. Siena Heights (7-5)
3rd. Goshen (7-5)
5th. Mount Vernon Nazarene (4-8)
5th. Aquinas (4-8)
7th. Cornerstone (0-12)
LINK ORIGINAL: The Trinidad Guardian