ROMEOVILLE – The seventh-ranked Lewis University’s men’s volleyball team beat 10th-ranked Loyola University for the third time this season and the first time in three sets with a 25-17, 25-18, 25-19 Midwestern Intercollegiate Volleyball Association Tournament title win before a standing-room-only crowd at Neil Carey Arena to advance to the NCAA Men’s Championships from May 2 to 4 in Long Beach, California. Coach Dan Friend’s 25-5 Flyers will find out their opponent at noon Sunday.
The Flyers lost opening sets before winning three in a row in the first two matches against the Ramblers (21-8), but in the biggest of the season between the longtime rivals, they were able to get the job done in straight sets to advance the finals. It’s only the second time that Lewis won the MIVA tournament, the other being in 2012 against Loyola.
Lewis was led by tournament MVP Julian Moses (10 kills, .304 hitting, four block assists, six digs), all-MIVA picks Ryan Coenen (10 kills, .429 hitting) and Matt Yoshimoto (35 aces), Mitch Perinar (eight kills, .438 hitting), Tyler Mitchem (six kills) and TJ Murray (six kills).
The Herald-News will post an online story Sunday morning and will have a follow-up story on the Flyers in Monday’s sports section.
HIGH SCHOOL BASEBALL
Joliet Central 2, Minooka 1: The Steelmen had only three hits, but that proved to be just enough as they edged the Indians.
Joliet Central improved to 6-9 with the win. John Forneris and Kyle Walter combined to record 14 strikeouts.
Plainfield South 9, Joliet West 2: The Cougars (15-2) used a three-run first and a four-run fourth to take control of this Southwest Prairie contest.
Lemont 19, T.F. North 4: Bobby Wisz had three hits and Anthony Fornero drove in four as the Indians (12-6) cruised to a South Suburban Conference victory.
Joliet Catholic 12, Niles Notre Dame 3: The Hilltoppers (16-4) bashed out 17 hits as they breezed to an East Suburban Catholic Conference victory.
Nate Gehrke had two hits and three RBIs while Nick Iannantone also drove in three runs.
Joliet Central 4-5, Bolingbrook 2-4: Cole Sebby and Alexander Gregurich kept the Raiders bats in check for a Southwest Prairie win in Game One, while Jalen Green had two hits for the Steelmen in the second game, helping them to the sweep.
Joliet West 11, Shepard 0: A nine-run third inning allowed the Tigers (11-9) to roll to a nonconference win.
Stevenson 9, Romeoville 2: The Spartans (5-11-1) managed only three hits in a nonconference loss.
Plainfield Central 14, Yorkville 1: Jake Donahue drove in four runs as the Wildcats (12-7) cruised to a nonconference victory.
Plainfield East 14, Ridgewood 5: A nine-run second inning was more than enough for the Bengals in a nonconference cruise to victory.
Andrew Hill, Aiden Flynn and Dylan Sullivan all had two hits for the Bengals (12-6).
Plainfield North 10, Stagg 2: The Tigers stacked up nine runs in the first three innings and breezed to a nonconference victory.
Andrean (Ind.) 4, Providence 2: The Celtics carried a 2-1 lead into the seventh inning but couldn’t hang on in the opening round of play in the Do It Stevies Way Tournament.
Reed-Custer 10, Westmont 6: Caleb LaGrange had a field day for the Comets as he collected three hits and five RBIs on the day.
Beecher 12-4, Wilmington 1-3: It was a long day for the Wildcats, who started poorly by surrendering six runs in the first inning of the first contest.
Antonio Tafoya had two hits in the second game for the Wildcats (8-8) but they still came up short.
Morris 8, Pontiac 2: Morris ran its win streak to four behind a strong effort from Luke Olbrot (eight strikeouts).
Roanoke-Benson 3, Dwight 2: The Trojans bats went silent after a two-run first inning and they eventually fell in eight innings.
HIGH SCHOOL SOFTBALL
Plainfield South 24, Joliet Central 3: The Cougars ran away and hid from the Steelmen with a 12-run second inning that put them firmly in control of a Southwest Prairie Conference matchup.
Kendall Vogt had four hits and six RBIs for Plainfield South (11-6).
Minooka 3, Joliet West 2: The Indians forced extra innings by pushing across a run in the bottom of the seventh then won it three innings later by plating one more in the 10th.
Abby Davis and Grace Robles each had two hits for Minooka (7-11).
Seneca 11, Gardner-South Wilmington 0: The Fighting Irish won their fifth consecutive game by dominating in a nonconference victory.
Grace Flatness struck out six, while Cassidy Draves and Abriana Jashari each had two hits to pace the offensive attack.
Lincoln-Way East 9, Sandburg 0: Danielle Drogemuller scattered 10 hits while striking out 10 in a complete game effort. Paige Geraghty fueled the Griffins offense with four hits.
Lincoln-Way Central 14, Lemont 5: It was a festival of offense for the Knights as they got four hit days from Gabriella Gedville and Jenna Deang, while Torince Muczynski drove in five.
Wheaton Warrenville South 7, Plainfield North 6: Ryan Shaughnessey had three hits but the Tigers couldn’t push across any late runs for a win.
Providence 6, Bishop McNamara 5: Laila Summers struck out five in the circle as the Celtics (14-3) earned a narrow victory.
Joliet Catholic 5, Herscher 4: Andie Broniewicz drove in the key run for the Angels (12-4) with a walk-off single as they collected their second one-run win of the day.
Lockport 11, Herscher 1: Gianna Bauer struck out seven and allowed just one hit, while Haley Panfil paced the potent Porters offense with three hits.
Oswego 18, Joliet Central 0: The Steelmen (3-12) had a rough go, managing only two hits in a Southwest Prairie loss.
Lincoln-Way West 6, Tinley Park 5: Hannah Pfeifer drove in the game-winner, as the Warriors needed eight innings to earn the nonconference win.
Downers Grove South 4, Plainfield East 3: Rachel Barrientos connected for three hits for the Bengals (5-15), but a late rally still came up just short.
Streator 7, Morris 2: Morris was done in by a five-run Streator fourth inning.
Seneca 3, Fieldcrest 2: Maddie Klicker provided the key hit in the seventh inning to lift the Fighting Irish to a victory.
Seneca 5, Princeton 4: The Fighting Irish fended off a late rally to win their second game of the day.
Carl Sandburg edges JJC twice: The Wolves were on the short side of a pair of pitching duels losing, 2-1, in the opener before falling, 3-2, in the second game.
Izzy Ortiz rapped a double in the first game and collected two hits in the second contest for JJC (27-13).
On Thursday, The Wolves split a pair of games with Waubonsee who took the first game, 4-3, with JJC bouncing back to take a 2-1 win in the nightcap.
In the opener, Rachel Goff rapped two hits, while Paityn Smith was tacked with the hard-luck loss.
In the second game, Goff and Lexi Meurer accounted for the two RBIs which was just enough support to make a winner of Lexi Secor who struck out four.
Lewis sweeps McKendree: The offense was relentless for Lewis as it picked up an 8-4 win in the opener and a 7-3 win in the second contest.
Lewis jumped out to a 6-0 lead in the first game and collected 12 hits in the game. Dara Sanders drove in two runs.
Elexis Swartzentruber took the offensive lead in Game 2 driving in four runs for the Flyers (18-26).
On Friday, Home runs lifted Lewis to a 6-5 win in the opener against Illinois-Springfield, but an offensive shutdown led to an 8-0 Flyer loss in the second game.
Cierra Taylor connected for a grand slam in the third inning to put Lewis in front early and when UIS rallied to get back in the game, Elexis Swartzentruber belted a two-run homer to help secure the victory.
In Game 2, Lewis mustered only two hits.
Wolves split a pair with Milwaukee Tech: Little went right for JJC in the opener, as they dropped a 13-6 decision, but they rebounded nicely for a 6-3 win in the second game to improve to 19-18.
In the second contest, Noah Hibler and Zack Lauras had two hits and an RBI, while Clint Underwood picked up the win in relief.
On Friday, The Wolves stayed at the .500 mark by splitting a twinbill with Carl Sandburg, losing, 11-7, in the opener before rebounding for a 6-2 win in the nighcap.
Lauras was 2 for 4 with an RBI in the opening game loss.
In Game 2, Jacob Suchor picked up a complete game victory by striking out 10 and allowing only five hits.
Sam Andrade fueled the offense with two hits and two RBIs.
Flyers drop rubber match: William Jewell took the final game of a three-game set with Lewis, taking the contest by a 7-6 margin.
Lewis was forced to play catch-up for most of the game, but rallied in the seventh inning with a four run frame highlighted by a two-run homer by Anthony Rios.
The two teams traded the lead for the next few innings before William Jewell put two on the board in the eighth.
On Friday, Lewis ran its winning streak to six games with a 9-4 win over William Jewell in the opener of a doubleheader, but the string of victories wouldn’t continue with a 8-7 loss in the second game.
The opener saw the Lewis bats come alive early as Brandon Post slugged a home run to set the tone as the Flyers would finish the game with 11 hits.
In Game 2, the offense was still present, but a high number of walks and hit batsmen led to the Flyers going down to defeat.
Pair of winners for St. Francis at Augustana: Akwasi Atkins met the NAIA National Meet “B” standard in his first competiton of the season in winning the triple jump at the Augustana Invitational with a leap of 47-6.5.
Brandon Ruffin also reached the top of the podium, taking the title in the 110-meter hurdles in 15.25 seconds.
Saints 3,200 relay meets qualifying standard: The University of St. Francis women’s 3,200 relay squad ran the third-fastest time in the NAIA during a winning effort at the Augustana Invitational.
Sabrina Baftiri, Taylor Conroy, Celina Mayforth and Eva Bruno clocked in with a spectacular time of 9:20.31 to meet the NAIA “A” Standard for qualification.
St. Francis also dominated the 1,500-meter run at the invite with Baftiri leading a pack of Saints runners that finished in four of the top five spots. Baftiri won in 4:44.11.