The No. 2-seeded Illinois Wesleyan volleyball team lost a five-set heartbreaker to No. 3 seed Millikin in the semifinals of the College Conference of Illinois and Wisconsin Tournament at Shirk Center on Thursday.
The Titans (9-20) fell, 22-25, 25-19, 18-25, 25-19, 15-10, while the Big Blue (21-12) advanced to Saturday's 5 p.m. championship match against No. 1 seed Carthage (26-3) at Kenosha, Wis.
Jessica McCall led IWU with 13 kills while Emily Steininger chipped in 10. Madi Corey handed out 33 assists and Amber Juarez notched 24 digs.
Lauren Brummel had 21 kills for Millikin, which outhit its host, .182 to .143.
Eight Redbirds net MVC honors: Eight ISU soccer players earned all-Missouri Valley Conference honors, it was announced Thursday night at the MVC Banquet in Springfield, Mo. Senior Kate Del Fava was named the MVC Player of the Year.
Del Fava, who was also named to the all-MVC first team, led the conference in goals (15), points (34) and game-winning goals (7).
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This is the third-straight year Del Fava earned first team honors. She was named to the all-freshman team in 2016.
Other first team honorees were senior goalkeeper Haley Smith and junior centerback Alissa Ramsden. Smith became the program-record holder with 26 career shutouts earlier this season and has collected 66 saves while posting a .786 save percentage. Ramsden contributed to ISU’s 10 shutouts while also adding two game-winning goals and two assists.
Senior Megan McEachern and junior Natalie Vaughn-Low both earned second team recognition. Vaughn-Low totaled 14 points. Junior midfielders Abby Basler and Ashley Santos earned honorable mention. Basler totaled 14 points and a team-high five assists.
Peyton Kennedy was named to the all-freshman team. The No. 2 seeded Redbirds will face No. 3 Missouri State in the MVC semifinals in Springfield, Mo., at 3 p.m. Friday.
Del Fava Academic All-District: Del Fava has been named to the CoSIDA Academic All-District First Team. The honor recognizes the nation’s top student-athletes for their performances on the field and in the classroom. She has a 4.0 cumulative grade point average while double majoring in pre-veterinarian medicine and animal science.
Del Fava is among 10 national finalists for the Senior CLASS Award and is an ISU Bone Scholar, the highest honor that can be bestowed on undergraduate students.
First-team Academic All-District honorees will advance to the Google Cloud Academic All-America ballot. First-, second- and third team Academic All-America honorees will be announced next month.