Volleyball to honor eight seniors on Saturday

By Jacob Knabel on Oct. 27, 2016 in Volleyball

SEWARD, Neb. – It will be Senior Day on Saturday when the Concordia University volleyball program hosts both Central Christian College (Kan.) and Dakota Wesleyan. The Senior Day ceremony will take place prior to the day’s final match, which is set for a 5 p.m. CT first serve. The nonconference tussle with Central Christian will get underway at 11:30 a.m.

Saturday, Oct. 29
11:30 a.m. – Concordia vs. Central Christian
1:30 p.m. – Central Christian vs. Dakota Wesleyan
3:30 p.m. – Concordia vs. Dakota Wesleyan (JV)
5 p.m. – Concordia vs. Dakota Wesleyan

The senior class has helped lift the program to new heights. In terms of productivity, seniors Paige Getz, Alayna Kavanaugh, Tiegen Skains and Taylor Workman have headlined the class of eight that will be recognized on Saturday. Kavanaugh is the most decorated based on career awards. She’s a two-time first team all-conference and last season was named to the AVCA-NAIA West Central All-Region team and chosen as an honorable mention All-America selection. The Lincoln Christian High School product has amassed 4,232 assists as a four-year starter at setter.

Kavanaugh has facilitated pin hitters Getz and Skains on the attack throughout their careers. The two have combined for more than 2,000 career kills. Getz’s 1,252 career kills rank as the fourth highest total in the program’s history. She could yet rise as high as third if she can pass current assistant coach Rachel (Kirchner) Miller (1,315). Workman has also been a force in the middle. In her four seasons at Concordia, she’s racked up 721 kills and 274 blocks while hitting .306.

The senior class owns a four-year record of 75-51 with the high point being a 26-9 record and national tournament berth in 2015. Last season’s squad also advanced all the way to the GPAC tournament championship match. At 12-16 overall in 2016, the Bulldogs will need a late season run to produce a fourth-straight winning season. Additional members of the senior class include Mikayla Higgins, Hannah Oberle, Naomi Quigg and Allison Wiebe.

Fifth-year head coach Scott Mattera’s squad got back on track on Wednesday with a four-set victory at College of Saint Mary. The win snapped a six-match losing streak. Three Bulldogs registered double-figure kill totals: Skains (13), Getz (12) and freshman Alex La Plant (12). Freshman Emmie Noyd enjoyed a nice night, contributing eight kills and seven blocks. Kavanaugh dished out 44 assists and Jocelyn Garcia recorded 25 digs.

Central Christian, a NAIA Independent, sports a record of 7-20. Outside hitter Kasi Kraus is the Tigers’ leading hitter with 228 kills. Meanwhile, Dakota Wesleyan (16-12, 3-9 GPAC) is on schedule to end a lengthy run of consecutive losing seasons. The Tigers were beaten in straight sets by No. 10 Dordt on Wednesday.

Just three matches will remain on the regular-season schedule following Saturday’s action. The Bulldogs will return to Walz on Wednesday, Nov. 2 to host No. 2 Hastings (21-2, 12-1 GPAC). The Broncos are a game up on No. 3 Midland in the race for the GPAC regular-season title. The top eight teams in the final conference standings will advance to the GPAC tournament, which will get underway on Nov. 8.