Mastodons Win on Senior Night to Clinch No. 5 Seed

Sports

FORT WAYNE, Ind. – After honoring senior Jack Carlson for senior night on Saturday (April 7), No. 15 Fort Wayne swept McKendree (25-21, 25-23, 25-20) on Arnie Ball Court to secure the No. 5 seed in the MIVA Tournament. Carlson earned one dig in his last regular season game as a Mastodon.

The Mastodons will face Lewis in the opening round of the MIVA Tournament on Saturday, April 14 in Chicago.

Fort Wayne spread the offense around, having four players with at least seven kills. Richie Diedrich led in hitting percentage with .636 (7-0-11), followed by Tony Price with .375 (8-2-16). Colton Stone had seven kills and Pelegrin Vargas had a match-high 10.

The ‘Dons started cold, trailing 13-7 in the opening set. Following that point, Fort Wayne went on a 16-6 run that gave the Mastodons a lead they would not yield. The second set was similar, as McKendree led from 4-3 to 23-21, but the ‘Dons rattled off four straight to end the frame. Tomas Gago had two straight blocks to end the set, assisted by Vargas and Michael Keegan. In the third, Fort Wayne went on a 3-1 run to force a Bearcat timeout at 11-9, and followed the timeout with four in a row. McKendree answered with a 5-1 run, but Fort Wayne continued to extend its lead to as many as five.

The home team had seven team blocks on the night, led by Gago with four and Keegan with three. Fort Wayne held McKendree to .140 hitting overall (.067 in the first frame). KolbieKnorr and Keegan led the way defensively with six digs each.

Fort Wayne improves to 18-10, 6-8 MIVA, while McKendree falls to 11-14, 6-8 MIVA. With the ‘Dons clinching the No. 5 seed, McKendree will be the No. 6 seed.

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