SATURDAY (NOV. 28) - Top-seeded and nationally-ranked No. 20 UNI took home the title of the 2009 State Farm Missouri Valley Conference Volleyball Championship, topping third-seeded Wichita State, 3-1, Saturday afternoon. It was the Panthers 19th appearance in the tournament championship, and their 14th-ever title, the most in MVC history.
UNI will receive the Valley's automatic berth into the 2009 NCAA Volleyball Championship, as the Panthers will await their destination and opponent during Sunday's NCAA Volleyball Selection Show at 2 p.m. (CST) on ESPNews.
FRIDAY (NOV. 27) - No. 3 Wichita State advanced to the title match of the 2009 State Farm Missouri Valley Conference Championship after pulling out a 15-12 victory over No. 2 Missouri State in the decisive fifth set of the first semifinal. The Shockers won by score of 25-15, 23-25, 25-23, 22-25, 15-12. Four of the five sets were decided by three points or less, as the Shockers took the first, third and final set, while the Bears countered on the second and fourth sets. Emily Stockman led the Shockers with a career-high 30 kills, while Kim Wadsworth added a career-high 18 kills. Mary Elizabeth Hooper collected a career-high 66 assists and Melissa Granville had a match-high 26 digs. Wichita State will await the winner of top-seeded and nationally-ranked UNI versus host and fourth-seeded Creighton.
Top-seeded and nationally ranked UNI advanced to the final of the State Farm Missouri Valley Conference Championship with a 3-0 win over host and fourth-seeded Creighton. The Panthers took the match by scores of 25-20, 25-16 and 25-18, earning their 27th consecutive victory. Bre Payton led the charge with her seventh triple-double of the season, racking up 11 kills, 34 assists and 12 digs. She also collected a team-high five blocks. Shannon Aschoff and Beth Discher each tallied nine kills for UNI, and Ellie Blankenship finished with 11 digs and two service aces. The Panthers will play in their 19th MVC Championship title match, in search of their 14th tournament championship.
THURSDAY (NOV. 26) - No. 3 Wichita State advanced to the semifinals of the 2009 State Farm Missouri Valley Conference Championship with a 3-1 win over No. 6 Southern Illinois, by scores of 25-15, 25-27, 25-23 and 25-19. The Shockers came out firing, posting a .516 attack percentage in the first set, but the Salukis countered during the second set, tying things at one apiece during the intermission. The third set was a battle to the finish, but Wichita State came out on top, as momentum carried the Shockers to a 3-1 victory in the fourth set. The win was the first for the Shockers in the State Farm MVC Championship since 2005. Emily Stockman led WSU with 20 kills, while Sarah McGee had 16 kills, Kim Wadsworth had 12 kills and Emily Adney had a career-high 10 kills. Mary Elizabeth Hooper collected 54 assists, while Melissa Granville had 24 digs. The Shockers will face No. 2 Missouri State in the first semifinal match on Friday at 4 p.m.
No. 4 Creighton defended its home court with a 3-0 victory over No. 5 Drake before 922 fans at the State Farm Missouri Valley Conference Tournament, by scores of 25-14, 26-24 and 25-22. Jessica Houts lead Creighton with 12 kills, while Megan Bober had 35 assists, seven digs and three blocks. Allie Oelke had her 12th double-double of the season, finishing with 10 kills and 12 digs. Creighton finished with 43 kills, six aces, 59 digs and 10 blocks. The Bluejays The win was Creighton's school-record 10th home victory of the season, and sets up a date with top-seeded Northern Iowa on Friday at 6 pm.
TOURNAMENT INFORMATION - The 2009 State Farm Missouri Valley Conference Volleyball Championship will take place November 26-28, at the D.J. Sokol Arena, in Omaha, Neb., hosted by Creighton University. Creighton is hosting the championship for the first time in program history.
Fans can follow the action at the 2009 State Farm MVC Volleyball Championship online with live stats and streaming, pay-per-view video streams.
No. 3 Wichita State will face No. 6 Southern Illinois in the tournament opener on Thursday, Nov. 26, at 6:00 p.m., followed by host and No. 4 Creighton versus No. 5 Drake at 8:00 p.m. The game one winner between the Shockers and Salukis will take on the No. 2 seed Missouri State on Friday evening at 4:00 p.m. in the first semifinal, while the Bluejays/Bulldogs winner will face No. 1 seed and nationally ranked No. 20 UNI in the second semifinal at 6:00 p.m. on Friday.
Semifinal winners will face off for the Missouri Valley Conference automatic berth into the NCAA Volleyball Championship on Saturday, Nov. 28, at 3:07 p.m. Both opening round and semifinal matches are available on MVC Live - the league's video-streaming package, while the championship contest on Saturday will be televised live on the MVC TV Network at 3:07 p.m. The championship final will air live on Fox Sports Midwest, Fox Sports Indiana, Fox Sports Kansas City, Fox College Sports, Comcast SportsNet Chicago, Metro Sports in Kansas City, Mo. and on DirecTV Channel 671 and Dish Network Channel 418.