No.18 WKU sweeps ODU for 14th straight win, share of C-USA East title
BOWLING GREEN, Ky. – No.18 WKU Volleyball made an overall effort to extend its winning streak to 14 games while sweeping Old Dominion in straight sets, 3-0. The Hilltoppers added to their NCAA top conference winning streak (42) to open their final home series of the season. WKU’s powerful offense worked at their second-highest clip of the season, .472, while keeping the Monarchs at an attack rate equal to .000.
“We were really good offensively,” shared the head coach Travis Hudson. “When you hit .472 for a game you do some really good things. We made it work all over the place. Nadia was doing a really good job moving the ball around, which meant our first touches were really good to allow it to go. do that.”
“I think everyone was doing their best and doing what they are supposed to do,” added Nadia Dieudonne. “It makes my job easier when my hitters make good decisions and hit the percentage they are. It’s fun and I’m proud of everyone and myself too.”
The No.18 in WKU Volleyball is now 21-1 this season, while rising to 9-0 in conference. Old Dominion went to 11-12 overall and 3-6 in the league. The Hilltoppers swept away all three games against the Monarchs in program history.
WKU saw two veterans set program records Thursday night. With his first of two solo blocks on the night, Lauren Matthews became the program’s career solo block record holder at 118 – still with one season of eligibility remaining. Fifth-year defensive specialist Hallie Shelton made some marks in the record books, the match of the evening marked his program record 143rd career appearance as a Hilltopper. With three aces in the game, Shelton also moved up to third on the Tops’ all-time list in the category and has 178 in his career.
“It’s pretty cool,” Matthews shared of his record. “Everyone is always focused on the offensive end, but defense is a big key in this game.”
Matthews had 13 kills on 19 attempts for a .579 hit on the night, marking the ninth straight game the senior led the Hilltoppers in kills.
Former Dominion at WKU – 25-13, 25-16, 25-14
After Old Dominion scored the game’s opening point, WKU quickly took a 4-1 lead and forced ODU’s timeouts to 6-2 and 22-12. Each Hilltopper who had an attack in the frame recorded at least two eliminations. The Hilltoppers dominated the opening set, racking up 16 kills from 25 clear attempts. WKU limited Old Dominion to just six in-frame eliminations, operating on a -0.083 clip. Matthews led the way for the Hilltoppers, registering four kills on four strokes. ODU would only score seven points in the set as the Tops made six serve errors in the frame.
WKU took a 6-3 lead early on, triggered by four kills from Matthews. Trailing 15-9, Old Dominion took their first time out of the set. Out of the break, Matthews recorded his record 117e career solo block, scoring 16-9 in favor of the Tops. WKU would ultimately take the second set 25-11, running at a 0.423 punch clip while keeping the Monarchs at a game-best 0.188 punch clip.
Shelton struck for his third ace of the night to make it 4-2 for WKU early in the third period. The Hilltoppers would increase their lead to 21-10 on the heels of a Katie Howard solo block, which immediately followed an assist from Dieudonné and Matthews. The Tops won the set 25-14, now the Monarchs at a clip of -.200.
Katie Isenbarger joined Shelton with several aces on the game, recording two of his own. Isenbarger recorded six kills of seven kills for a 0.857 hit percentage as well as three digs and a solo block. Hood Ashley and Logan kael each also added an ace.
Matthews’ 13 kills led WKU as she also added four blocks. Paige briggs counted eight kills while hitting 0.583 and added six digs. Howard entered the action with six kills and Kayland jackson posted four.
Dieudonné distributed 31 assists while registering five assists on six attacks to her. She added two digs and a pair of assists.
Kael led the way in digs for WKU with eight.
WKU Volleyball welcomes the Monarchs again on Friday night with the first serve at 6 p.m. CT. The game will feature both a pre-game senior night and an alumni night for the Hilltopper program. Recognition of Seniors’ Night must begin at 5:50 p.m. at the earliest
Six Hilltoppers will be honored at the pre-match ceremony, including: taylor bebout, Nadia Dieudonne, Hood Ashley, Kayland jackson, Logan kael and Hallie Shelton.
- WKU used the range of Paige briggs, Katie Howard, Lauren Matthews, Katie Isenbarger, Kayland jackson, Nadia Dieudonne and Logan kael at the libero for the fourth game in a row. This is the fifth different starting lineup to hit the ground for WKU and the unity is 4-0.
- WKU leads the all-time series against Old Dominion, 3-0, sweeping all three games.
- Hallie Shelton added three of seven aces to WKU’s total serve in the game. She has up to 178 aces in her career, placing her third in WKU history. Shelton also appeared in her 143rd career game, the most all-time in WKU history.
- Matthews added four blocks in total, including two solo, and is now 118 solo blocks in his career – a new WKU program record. She also has up to 389 blocks in total over her career, still good for sixth place on this Hilltopper career list.
- With the win, the Hilltoppers improve to 21-1 (9-0 C-USA) this season.
- The Tops’ NCAA best conference winning streak is 42 with Saturday’s win, continuing to surpass the previous American Conference record already held by WKU (38).
- With today’s results, the head coach Travis Hudson now has 686-217 during his career.
- WKU Volleyball is now at an all-time program record of 964-492 with Saturday’s victory.
How to follow WKU Volleyball: For full information on WKU Volleyball, follow the team on Twitter at @WKUVolleyball and head coach Travis Hudson To @TravisHudsonWKU. The team is also on Instagram and Facebook.