Wichita State volleyball coach Chris Lamb has just the right combination of players on his team.
“We’re a little unbalanced in scoring … but we’re kind of balanced the way that we want to be,” Lamb said. “I feel like we want to play a certain way against certain opponents, and I feel like we put it in Chelsey Feekin’s hands to execute that and we get what we want.”
With Ashley Andrade heavily contributing to the scoring, along with Elizabeth Field and Sam Sanders, Feekin embodied a role of making the team gel together in Saturday’s 3-0 (25-18, 25-12, 25-9) victory over Loyola. Feekin, a senior delivered 34 assists and four kills.
WSU (19-4, 8-1) remained atop the Missouri Valley Conference with Illinois State. Loyola is 8-12, 3-6 in its first MVC season.
“Tonight I didn’t really dump that much, but I just try to stay as active as I can,” Feekin said. “I know I have a great set of hitters that are going to get it done just as well.”
Lamb utilized 12 players in Saturday’s win. Alyssa Carney finished with six digs and one service ace, redshirt freshman Taylor Brownlee had one kill, and Kristin Byers added two block assists for the last two points of the third set.
“I’m trying to spread it out whenever sets or games give us the opportunity, because I think it’s very refreshing,” Lamb said of getting more of his players playing time. “I think that if you can get them in (the game), it goes a long way and we try to do that.”
Andrade finished with 14 kills and .767 hitting percentage, combined with Sanders’ nine kills and Fields’ seven.
“It’s not everything I do by myself, it’s the littles passing, and Chelsey is up there setting it,” Andrade said. “She sees a lot of the blocks that I don’t necessarily see, so it helps when I do get set and there’s open net depending on certain situations.”
The match against Loyola was the third win in the first three matches of a five-game homestand. The matches at home are not only an opportunity for rest, but also a chance for the team to continue improving defensively.
“We deserve it. We’ve been on the road so much,” Lamb said.
WSU topped Loyola 44-24 in digs, while finishing with 16 blocks to Loyola’s two and holding the Ramblers to a .052 team hitting percentage.
“We’re trying to simplify some things in the back row. We don’t have as many parts right now,” Lamb said. “Lately I think our dig totals are climbing, our hitting percentage against numbers are improving, and we’re going to stick with it.”
The Shockers continue their homestand next Friday against Drake (2-19, 0-9), and finish it with Northern Iowa (15-6, 7-2) on Saturday.