MCC Volleyball Starts Off Strong
The #2 ranked Lady Thunder have started the 2021-22 volleyball season strong, beginning with a solid 3-1 home weekend opener at the Thunder Invitational on August 27 & 28. Manhattan Christian hosted 4 NAIA teams and only lost to Sterling College in a hard-fought match. MCC defeated Cottey College, York College and Central Christian College (KS). The following week was filled with travel days to Spurgeon College coming away with a 3-1 victory. Up next was the Midwest Christian College Conference Classic. MCC came away with two solid wins over Emmaus Bible College and Faith Baptist Bible College both in three sets. Head Coach Lauren Sanders had this to say about the Classic, “We had a strong showing at the Conference Classic. It was great to be able to see all of the other conference teams and see where we stacked up. Our team played excellent volleyball in a tough atmosphere to play in. We were really proud of the continued effort and growth that we saw.”
This past week saw road victories, first stop was at Kansas Christian College coming away with a 3-0 win. MCC then traveled down to Joplin, MO to take on rival Ozark Christian Friday evening and Dallas Christian on Saturday. Against Ozark, MCC came out strong and easily controlled the match, winning 3-0. Saturday would bring on #10 ranked and 2020 NCCAA National Tournament Runner Up Dallas.
This match would prove to be a full-on battle, with both teams giving it all they had. Both teams had a lot to prove, and each team stepped up to the challenge. In what would be a back and forth 5 set match, MCC would prevail with a 3-2 win over Dallas. The scores were close, and several sets went beyond 25 points (21-25, 28-26, 24-26, 25-22 and 17-15. MCC overcame deficits in almost every set including the 5th, down 4-8 at one point and pulling it out in the end.
“This was an incredible match! Both teams played with an incredible amount of intensity and heart! I was so proud of the way-out team pulled together and truly played for their player next to them and not for themselves” stated Sanders. Brenna McNellis would run the middle finishing with an incredible 27 kills with a .500 attacking percentage.
With Brenna’s outstanding play on Saturday and in earlier matches of the week, McNellis has been named the NCCAA Student Athlete of the Week. A well-deserved honor for her excellent play!
Manhattan Christian is currently 9-1 overall and sitting nicely at the top of the MCCC with a conference record of 3-0. Up next for the Thunder will be a string of home games starting September 14 with Spurgeon College, followed by a tri-match day with NAIA teams, Stephens College and Bethany College (KS) on Saturday, August 18.