BLOOMINGTON, Ill. – The No. 23 University of Chicago volleyball team concluded a stellar 2017-18 season Thursday in a three-set loss to host Illinois Wesleyan University in the first round of the NCAA Division III Tournament.
The Maroons (23-9) – who made their seventh NCAA Tournament appearance -- fell by scores of 25-15, 25-14, and 25-19 to the 14th-ranked Titans at IWU's Shirk Center in Bloomington, Ind.
Junior Sarah Muisenga led UChicago with 12 kills and 10 digs, first-year Emma Griffith delivered 25 assists, and four players had double-digit numbers, as Katherine Wilson (10), Griffith (11), and Anne Marie Stifter (18) joined Muisenga in leading the defense.
The host Titans (23-7), who defeated the Maroons for the second time this season, were solid at the net, hitting .294 for the match, while holding UChicago to a .094 attack percentage.
Illinois Wesleyan advances to Friday's NCAA Second Round, where it will face Carthage College (26-8), a 3-1 winner over Concordia-Wisconsin Thursday. Tyler Brown led IWU with 17 kills, hitting .469 for the match.
The Maroons, who returned to the NCAA postseason in 2017 after just missing out on an at-large berth in 2016, will graduate one senior, defensive specialist Frances McDonald.
McDonald will finish her career with three NCAA appearances and an 87-46 overall record during her tenure with UChicago.