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Womens Volleyball makes it to NCAA tournament

The cardinals ended their season in the first round of the NCAA Division III Championships.

The Otterbein women's volleyball team has won the OAC tournament along with making it to the NCAA tournament.

Starting on November 1, the volleyball team ran through the OAC tournament by beating Ohio Northern 3-0 and Mount Union 3-2. They got the OAC regular season title and then went on to win the OAC tournament.  

Monica Wright is the women's coach with this season being her 18th season coaching for Otterbein. She has led the team to the NCAA tournament eight times. As Wright talks about their thoughts going into the first round of the NCAA tournament she said, “we knew they were a solid team, and we knew we would have to slow down a couple of very good players.  We felt confident that we could compete and win the match, but we knew it would be a challenge.”  

On November 16 they traveled to Oshkosh, Wisconsin to face the University of La Verne in the first round of the NCAA Division III Championships. Although they lost 1-3, the score was remarkably close in all sets.  

Maddie Mergen, a sophomore outside hitter, said, “we did a great job controlling some of their bigger hitters and keeping them from running our court and our defense did an amazing job of getting there along with touches.” 

For the volleyball team, they came out this season with an undefeated OAC record which is the first in school history.  

As the season ended Wright said, “we are a more balanced group this year, I am proud of the fact that we were a difficult team to scout and defend because we had so many different weapons.  I also think we have improved defensively since last season and since the beginning of the season as well.”  

Mergen talking about the end of the season said, “our team has become a family and a safety net for each other over the course of the season, which in big games is the most important thing to keep everyone calm and ready to keep fighting.” 

Over the course of this past season, they have had many star players that have stood out not only in the OAC, but also in the NCAA as well. Morgan Hartman was awarded MVP of the league, Amanda Troyer was awarded OAC Libero of the year, and Kennedy Hoffman received OAC Tourney MVP.

Seniors Madison McCoy, Kailey Mishler, Anna Cecil, and Morgan Hartman have also provided great leadership and skill to the program not only this season, but over all four years.  

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