GRAND RAPIDS, Mich.—The No. 9 (American Volleyball Coaches Association) Heidelberg University volleyball team was swept by No. 5 Wittenberg University (25-23, 25-22, 25-16) today in the second round of the 2011 NCAA Division III Volleyball Tournament at Van Noord Arena in Grand Rapids, Mich. Despite the loss, the Berg (32-7, 9-0 Ohio Athletic Conference) finished its season with the program’s second consecutive 30-win campaign and third in the last four years.
Wittenberg (33-3) advances to the regional semifinals to face the winner between No. 1 Calvin (Mich.) College and No. 14 Hope (Mich.) College.
Junior setter Rachel Ferguson (Brighton, Mich./Brighton) recorded her sixth double-double of the season and second of the NCAA tournament with a match-high 18 assists and team-high 14 digs.
Junior two-time honorable mention right side hitter Jacki Street (Grafton/Midview) paced the ‘Berg offense with 10 kills and junior two-time All-OAC middle hitter Marian Bevington (Celina/Parkway) added eight kills of her own.
In addition to Ferguson on defense, senior two-time OAC player of the year Jackie Reinhart (New Riegel) and freshman libero Tessa Benanzer (Fort Loramie) tallied 13 digs and 10 digs, respectively. Sophomore setter Alexa Frank (Tiffin/Calvert) notched a team-high three blocks.
The Tigers were paced by Kimmie Dyer’s match-high 13 kills and Hallie Donathan’s 15 assists on offense. Christina Gilene dug a match-high 17 attacks and Dyer had a match-high four blocks on defense.
In 2011, 12th-year head coach Jason Miller led the Tri-Color to its third straight OAC regular season championship and fifth consecutive appearance in the NCAA tournament en route to OAC coach of the year honors. In addition, the Berg saw five of its players earn All-OAC accolades, including three first-team selections.
Miller returns 20 of 23 players from this year’s roster, including five starters, for 2012.