BOWLING GREEN, Ky. – With a 3-1 victory over Miami (OH) on Saturday, WKU Volleyball
(6-4) secured its first tournament title of the 2018 season as the squad won its own
Holiday Inn-University Plaza Invite. Junior Emma Kowalkowski was named Tournament
MVP and sophomore Hallie Shelton also earned an All-Tournament Team nod.
“I knew we’d be a little emotionally-drained today coming into this one,” head coach
Travis Hudson opened. “We came out playing really, really well but you could see the
breakdowns coming in this young team as set two wore on. And even though we pulled
set two out, things were starting to fragment a little bit. We hung in there and
continued to grind and made enough plays.”
In a rematch of the Red and White’s second match of the 2017 season, WKU once again
claimed a 3-1 victory over the RedHawks. The Lady Toppers now own a 5-4 lead in the
all-time series against Miami (OH).
WKU opened the match with a demanding 25-13 first set win. Shelton notched five of
her 11 kills in the frame as the Lady Topper offense worked at a .296 hitting
percentage. Taylor Bebout racked up six of her seven digs on the day in the set as
Set two saw Anderson shine with five kills, leading WKU to a 25-23 victory for a 2-0
advantage in the match. Katie Isenbarger added four kills in the frame, bringing her
hitting clip to .455 at that point. Miami (OH) managed three ties in the set but
never led after WKU scored the opening point.
Out of the break, the RedHawks were able to adjust and claimed a 25-22 third set
victory to force the decisive fourth frame. After MU scored the first point, WKU
knotted things up on six occasions but could never obtain a lead. Miami (OH) put
together its best offensive set in the third, notching 13 kills on 36 swings for a
Looking to avoid a fifth set for the second-straight match, Hudson’s squad deposited
16 kills on 30 attempts for a .300 hitting mark as the RedHawks managed just five
digs in the final set. Anderson registered five of her match-high 13 kills in the
frame while Kayland Jackson added four. The fourth set would close with 12 ties and
five lead changes between the sides – finishing as the only frame with a lead
Rachel Anderson led the way for the WKU offense, racking up 13 kills, marking her
eighth match of the season in double-digits. The senior worked at a .276 offensive
clip while adding four blocks and a dig defensively.
Shelton and Isenbarger each added double-digit kills with 11 apiece. As a team, WKU
registered a .287 clip while limiting the Miami (OH) offense to a .159 mark.
Defensively, Kowalkowski led the way with 16 digs to bring her total to 50 on the
weekend. Payton Frederick also finished in double figures for the sixth time during
her debut season.
At the net, Anderson and Isenbarger led WKU with four blocks each.
With its first of two home pre-conference tournaments in the books, WKU Volleyball
will remain home on The Hill again next weekend with the WKU Tournament on deck for
* The Lady Toppers now lead the all-time series against Chattanooga 5-4,
winning each of the last three meetings by 3-1 decisions.
* Run of the day: A 4-2 run in set four. While the run was small, it was all
the Lady Toppers needed to secure the 25-23 set four victory and claim the match.
Anderson had two kills and a solo block in that span.
* Rachel Anderson led WKU in kills for the seventh time on the young season.
* WKU Volleyball has now won 27-consecutive home matches – the longest home
winning streak in the NCAA.