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Four Ichabods earn All-MIAA volleyball recognition

WUallmiaaVB[Photo courtesy of Washburn Athletics]

By RICK PETERSON

TopSports.news

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Washburn University had four players earn All-MIAA volleyball honors on Wednesday afternoon, led by first-team picks Halle Meister and Jalyn Stevenson.

Kealy Kiviniemi earned second-team recognition while Corinna McMullenn received honorable mention.

Senior middle blocker Meister has turned in a career year en route to her first all-conference award.

In her 27 starts and 103 sets played, Meister has totaled 237 kills and currently leads the MIAA with a .363 attacking percentage. She has hit above .400 in 13 matches and has hit above .500 in nine of those.

Defensively, Meister leads Washburn with 82 total blocks and has made 11 solo blocks.

Stevenson, a sophomore outside hitter, earns her second-consecutive All-MIAA award after receiving honorable mention as a freshman.

This season Stevenson leads the Ichabods with 320 kills (sixth in the MIAA) for a 3.11 kills per set average (seventh in the MIAA). She has recorded 16 double-figure kill matches and knocked down a career-best 24 kills against No. 24 Central Missouri on Nov. 4.

Behind the service line, Stevenson is second on the team in aces with 34. She has notched 11 double-doubles this fall as she's also helped the team defensively and is third on the squad in digs, totaling 315 for a 3.06 digs per set average.

There have now been 25 different Washburn volleyball players to earn All-MIAA first team honors for a total of 44 first-team awards since Chris Herron took over the program in 2002.

After seeing limited action in the two non-conference tournaments to start the year, freshman right side hitter Kiviniemi has made the most of her time since conference play began.

Kiviniemi has appeared in all 28 matches with 14 starts, playing in 92 of the 106 sets and is up to 207 kills, ranking third on the team.

Kiviniemi holds a .276 attacking percentage and has also made 52 blocks at the net. In the five-set victory at Pittsburg State on Oct. 1, she was crucial in helping the Ichabods win as she led the team with 20 kills and hit .500 for the match. She has recorded six or more kills in 15 of the last 16 matches with five matches with double-digit kill totals.
 
McMullen, also a true freshman, has handled the majority of the setting duties for the Ichabods and averages 6.52 assists per set and totaled 691 assists on the year.

McMullen has started 27 of the 28 matches and is the only Ichabod to have played in every set. McMullen has had 15 matches with 25+ assists including six matches with over 30 assists.

She has served up 27 aces and leads the team with 12 double-doubles as she also averages 2.33 digs per set. In the four-set win over Missouri Western on Oct. 7, she recorded a season-high 39 assists and scooped up 17 digs.

Washburn will play next in the MIAA Tournament as the No. 5 seed, taking on No. 4 seed Central Oklahoma in the quarterfinal match at 7:30 p.m. Thursday at the Civic Arena in St. Joseph, Mo.

Former Silver Lake star Marissa Bates, a libero/defensive specialist for Pittsburg State earned second-team All-MIAA honors.

ALL-MIAA VOLLEYBALL

First team
Meg Auten, OH – Pittsburg State
Emersen Cyza, OH – Nebraska Kearney*
Jaedynn Evans, L/DS – Central Oklahoma*
Jaden Ferguson, RS – Northwest Missouri
Sydney Huck, OH – Central Oklahoma
Jenna Karp, MB – Central Oklahoma
Avery Kemp, MB – Northwest Missouri
Payton Kirchhoefer, OH – Northwest Missouri*
Halle Meister, MB – Washburn
Danielle Moje, MB – Missouri Western
Payton Neff, S – Nebraska Kearney
Kersti Nix, OH - Central Missouri*
Alyssa Rezac, S – Northwest Missouri*
Jensen Rowse, L/DS – Nebraska Kearney
Grace Southern, MB – Central Missouri
Bailee Sterling, MB – Nebraska Kearney
Jalyn Stevenson, OH – Washburn
[Reflects ties in voting]
*indicates unanimous selection
Second team
Marissa Bates, L/DS – Pittsburg State
Fernanda Canedo, OH – Missouri Southern
Abbie Casper, L/DS – Missouri Southern
Riley Daugherty, OH – Newman
Emily Ellis, MB – Fort Hays State
Lindsay Houran, S – Central Oklahoma
Kealy Kiviniemi, RS – Washburn
Mallorie Koehn, OH – Central Oklahoma
Tiffany Little, OH – Central Missouri
Amelia Neels, MB – Missouri Southern
Brianna Richard, S – Pittsburg State
Jenna Schulte, MB – Central Missouri
Janae Thurston, RS – Pittsburg State
Riley Tinder, OH/RS – Fort Hays State
Honorable entions
Central Missouri: Sydney Lierz – OH; Chandler Vaughan – S; Grace Winkelmann – L/DS
Emporia State: Leah Mach – OH/RS
Fort Hays State: Mykah Eshbaugh – OH/RS; Morgan Christiansen – MB; Jaden Daffer – L/DS
Missouri Southern: Sophie Mader – S
Nebraska Kearney: Lauren Taubenheim – OH; Fallon Stutheit – MB
Newman: Ozioma Ajekwu – MB; McKinzie Weaver – S; Natalie Morales – L/DS
Northwest Missouri: Abby Brunssen – MB; Kyah Luhring – L/DS; Kristen Ford – L/DS
Washburn: Corinna McMullen – S 

Player of the Year: Alyssa Rezac, S – Northwest Missouri*
Freshman of the Year: Sydney Huck, OH – Central Oklahoma
Coach of the Year: Amy Woerth – Northwest Missouri
*indicates unanimous selection

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