Vengeance served, Waite’s crew takes third


After all the confusion and frustration finally settled on the volleyball courts this weekend, NIU finished with a 3-1 record and a third place finish in a tournament that included some of the nation’s most respected teams.

NIU’s (6-2) first match in the University of California-Santa Barbara Classic pitted them against No. 17 University of California-Santa Barbara (1st place) on Friday, September 10. After losing two straight matches 15-3 and 15-7, Northern came back strong to win 16-14 in the third match, but couldn’t hold on any longer dropping the final game 15-9.

After rejuvenating themselves off the court, Northern came back and couldn’t be stopped as they swept past Fresno State University 15-5, 15-4, 15-11.

“We just had a great hiting night,” said head coach Pete Waite.

Kori Schauer led the team registering 16 kills followed closely by Amy Foulke with 13. Leading the way on defense was Nikki Kozak who registered 13 digs.

NIU came out ready to play on Saturday hoping to earn the right to play for third place, but a mixup at the scorer’s table almost drowned Northern’s dreams.

After leading the Univeristy of Idaho in the first game 12-10, the official scorer claimed the Huskies were out of service rotation which led to a side out, allowing UI to regain possesion.

Waite argued but let the call go until assistant coach Mark Swaya noticed that Idaho’s server was also out of position. By that time the Vandal’s had scored two more points knotting the score at 12-12, and Waite placed the game under protest.

As play continued, UI would have won the match in four games until a special protest committee went back over game film and determined the scorer was errant, having both teams lineups wrong.

The teams were forced to play again, picking up where the protest went into effect. This time, however, the Huskies came back determined becoming 15-12 victors, forcing a fifth match which they won 15-11.

Becky Ramsey accounted for 17 kills minus two errors in 31 attempts for a .484 hitting clip while also managing to dig 22 more balls.

The determined Northern Huskies defeated Santa Clara in the third place match 14-16, 5-15, 15-3, 15-12, 15-9.

“We were up 13-10 in the first game against Santa Clara,” said an upset Waite, “but we just couldn’t put it away.”

He described the second game as a carryover of frustration from game one when they scored only five points. Waite stated a major reason the team came alive in the third game was Tammy Cambell, who was perfect on the attack killing the ball three times in three attempts while digging four.

Senior standouts Becky Ramsey and Kori Schauer were also named to the All-Tournament team which consisted of eleven players.