Monster Match: Ball State 15-1 at WMU 15-1
Nov. 11, 2000
MT. PLEASANT, Mich. -- For the second time in a span of eight days, WMU swept Central Michigan University in Mid-American Conference volleyball action.
On Saturday night (Nov. 11), the Broncos won 15-13, 15-6 and 15-11 in Mt. Pleasant. Western Michigan also won, 3-0, in a match played in Kalamazoo on Friday, Nov. 3. WMU improves to 20-5 overall and 15-1 in the MAC, tying Ball State (also 15-1) for the league's best record.
Ball State and WMU have already clinched home court in the 2000 MAC Tournament quarterfinals, Tuesday, Nov. 21. On Friday, Nov. 18, the two teams will meet in WMU's University Arena, where the Broncos are undefeated, 7-0, versus MAC opponents this season and have won nine consecutive MAC matches extending back to November 1999.
Ball State concludes its regular season on the road with Friday's match at WMU and a contest at Eastern Michigan on Saturday, Nov. 18. Western finishes the season at home, hosting Ball State on Friday and Northern Illinois on Saturday.
Ball State owns tie-breaker advantage and can clinch the MAC West Division title and the No. 1 seed in the MAC Tournament with a win over Western Michigan. The Broncos must win both matches next weekend to guarantee themselves of the division title and the top tournament seed.
The Broncos have won 14 consecutive matches, eclipsing the 13-match win streak of the 1999 season. The Spikers now own their longest winning streak since the 1985 team won 15 in a row. WMU has also gained back-to-back 20-win seasons for the first time since 1986-87. Western Michigan was 25-7 overall in 1999.
Junior outside hitter M'Myia McQuirter led WMU in the win at Central Michigan with a match-high 14 kills on a .480 attack percentage. Classmate Zakiya Pope had 13 kills and hit .393 for the match.
Sophomore middle Angela Sillmon continues to block everything in sight. For the fourth match in a row, Sillmon led the Broncos in blocking. She had eight blocks against CMU and 17 for the two-match weekend. She also contributed seven kills against the Chippewas and hit .636 for the match.
Sophomore setter Ashley Ritter assisted her teammates on kills 44 times (14.67 assists-per-game) and had six kills of her own.
On Friday (Nov. 10) WMU won 3-1 at Toledo.
MAC Tournament standings
The top eight teams in the conference qualify for the MAC Tournament, and the top four host the quarterfinal round on Nov. 21. Ball State and Western Michigan have already locked up two of the top four seeds. The MAC semifinals (Nov. 24) and championship match (Nov. 25) will be played on the home court of the top remaining seed following the quarterfinals.
All of the tournament qualifiers are set following this weekend's contests, but the seeding in the tournament will not be decided until after matches played Nov. 17 and 18. Tournament qualifiers and their records through Nov. 11 are: Ball State (15-1), WMU Broncos (15-1), Northern Illinois (11-5), Ohio (11-6), Bowling Green (10-6), Akron (9-7), Kent State (9-7) and Central Michigan (8-8).
The top two seeds in the tournament go to the two division champions. The division champion with the best record will get the No. 1 seed and home-court advantage throughout the tournament. This season, that will be either WMU or Ball State as the West Division champion. The East Division champion will be the No. 2 seed, regardless of its record.
Conference records (matches through Nov. 11)
Team Record Division Ball State** 15-1 West WMU Broncos** 15-1 West Northern Illinois* 11-5 West Ohio* 11-6 East Bowling Green* 10-6 East Akron* 9-7 East Kent State* 9-7 East Central Michigan* 8-8 West Miami 5-10 East Eastern Michigan 5-12 West Toledo 4-12 West Marshall 2-14 East Buffalo 0-16 East *Have clinched tournament berths. **Have clinched home court in tournament quarterfinals.