Wichita State’s volleyball team maintained its hold on first place in the Missouri Valley Conference, beating Loyola 3-1 (25-23, 23-25, 25-20, 25-22) on Thursday night in Chicago.
Sam Sanders and Ashley Andrade each had 14 kills and Elizabeth Field had 13 for the Shockers, who combined for 20 blocks.
WSU never trailed in the first set, but never shook free from Loyola either. After taking a 17-12 lead, the Shockers allowed the Ramblers to pull even at 19-19 before WSU finished off the set.
The Shockers led the second set 21-17, but the Ramblers finished with an 8-2 run.
In the third set Loyola got within 19-17, but a service ace from Alyssa Carney helped WSU restore control and a kill by Sanders ended the set.
Neither team led the fourth set by more than two points until three consecutive kills by Field and a block by Field and Chelsey Feekin put the Shockers ahead 21-18, and WSU controlled the rest of the set.
WSU plays at Bradley at 3 p.m. Saturday, the finished the regular season next Friday at Missouri State. If WSU wins both matches it can do no worse than tied Northern Iowa for the Valley title.