Wayne State volleyball extended its win streak to four games with a three-set sweep of Wisconsin Parkside (25–23, 25–21, 25–23) at the Matthaei on Oct.27.

After falling behind 12–9 early, WSU scored the next three points to tie the match at 12. Both teams traded points for the remainder of the set with the visitors closing to 23–22 before consecutive kills by junior outside hitter Madelyn Krenz gave WSU the set victory.

In the second set, WSU overcame two separate Parkside leads to pull ahead 11–10. After the visitors equaled the set at 18, the home team scored three consecutive points, with a kill by senior outside hitter Hailey Richardson giving WSU a 2–0 match lead.

The visitors wouldn’t go quietly in the final set of the match, posting leads of 16–15 and 19–17 before WSU scored four of the match’s final five points with a kill by Richardson giving the home team the match victory.

After dropping a five-set match to Parkside on Sept. 21, head coach Tim Koth said being better prepared for their offensive attack was a focus for WSU heading into the contest.

“That was really an area of emphasis for us today to make sure that we were ready for their style of play, and we definitely did a much better job today than we did the first time in terms of defending the way they like to play,” Koth said.

Koth said the team’s aggressiveness at the net and Krenz’s contributions were some of the things that stood out during the match.

“We really need that (because) that helps Hailey Richardson be extra effective when it’s not just her side taking the swings,” Koth said. “I thought we got some great contributions from the middle as well, and I thought Ellie (Rodriguez) did what she always does and that’s play good defense and make plays at critical times that can really impact our opponent from a defensive position.”

WSU was led on offense by Richardson who had 17 kills. Krenz added 11 kills and freshman Kamryn Duffield added 37 assists.

The team’s six seniors were honored in a ceremony before the match. Koth said that the seniors have been impactful for the program.

“I can’t say enough about how they’ve really turned (the team’s culture) around from where it was when they first got here,” Koth said.

The win improved WSU’s record to 15–11 and 10–5 in the GLIAC. The Warriors enter their final game of the regular season tied with Saginaw Valley State for the fourth seed in the GLIAC Tournament. A WSU win and a Cardinals loss in the season finale would earn the Warriors a home game in the opening round of the tournament on Nov. 7.

WSU will play its final regular season match against Ashland University in Ashland, Ohio on Nov.3 at 2 p.m.

Matt Williams is sports editor of The South End. He can be reached at mattmwilliams86@gmail.com. Cover photo courtesy of WSU Athletics.

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