Julia Walz hugs coach after MAC Championship win vs. WMU 4-3-2021

Last week proved to be one of the most exciting weeks in BGSU athletics in recent memory as BGSU volleyball won the MAC Tournament for the first time since 2012. Here is a snapshot of what happened in BGSU athletics last week. 

Volleyball

The regular-season MAC champions did it again.

BGSU volleyball won the MAC volleyball postseason tournament this weekend which gets them an automatic bid into the NCAA tournament.

It caps off an incredible run for the Falcon ladies, who dominated all year en route to a 20-1 regular season, and then stormed through the postseason tournament. 

It started in the semi-finals on Friday as the Falcons took on No. 4 seed Miami (13-9). The Falcons were defeated in set one but came back to take sets two and three before Miami narrowly took set four, which set up for a winner take all set five. The Falcons were able to take it home 15-12 for the match.

First-team all-MAC performer Katelyn Meyer had a big match, leading the squad with 19 kills, while senior Jaqueline Askin came up big as well with 17 kills and Hanna Laube, a second-team all-MAC selection was her usual self with 49 total assists.

The win advanced them to play No. 2 seed Western Michigan for the MAC title.

The Falcons came out strong early against the Broncos, winning set one 25-17 before WMU came out strong and took set two 25-16.

Then, the Falcons took set three in a close call and set four 25-20 to give them the MAC title. Petra Indrova, another first-team all-MAC selection led BGSU with 17 kills, while Meyer had 16 and Askin had 15. The title represented just the third post-season tournament championship in Falcon volleyball history, and their first NCAA berth since 2012.

With the win, the Falcons finish the season 22-1.

The MAC Championship is a culmination of accomplishing a goal that head coach Danijela Tomic and her team set at the beginning of the season.

“I wanted it for this group of women. They’ve given us so much joy all year long in the toughest year of our lives. I believed we could do this, I wanted them to believe in themselves and their teammates,” Tomic said.

“This shows all the hard work we have put into this season. It started from last semester, we knew we had all this time to prepare for it. Everyday, we put in so much effort. We never took a day off, we were always working hard in the gym,” Junior Katelyn Meyer said. 

And despite the goal being met, Tomic and the Falcons aren’t satisfied quite yet. 

“This is not a team that is just happy to be there. We are going there to continue winning,” Tomic said.

The Falcons drew Weber State (18-1, Big Sky champions) in round one of the NCAA tournament, set to start on Wednesday at 7 p.m. EST, and with a win will advance to play No. 1 overall seed Wisconsin on Thursday.

Baseball

The red-hot Falcons, who came in winning 6 of their last 8 game including winning four-game sets at Ohio and then again at Akron, saw their run come to a screeching halt this weekend as Kent State swept all four games in the first home series of the year at Steller Field. The Falcons were ran over Friday by KSU by a score of 14-1. Then, in game one of a Saturday doubleheader the Falcons dropped game one, 10-6. Shortstop Nathan Rose and catcher Tyler Haas knocked in two runs apiece for the Falcons in game one. Game two was a much more uphill climb, as the Falcons lost 13-4. For the Sunday series-capper, the Falcons dropped it by a score of 10-5. Nathan Rose had a pair of doubles and Mason Montgomery had a couple of hits and an RBI. The Falcons are back in action with a four-game slate in Mount Pleasant against Central Michigan this weekend.

Softball

It was a fantastic weekend for Falcon softball as they welcomed Akron to town and swept the Zips in all four games. Game one Friday saw Redshirt Freshman Sydney Stepp get the ball and she pitched well, striking out six over 5.2 innings and surrendering just one earned run. The Falcons led all game until the sixth when Akron took a 4-3 lead in the top of the inning before the Falcons tied it in the bottom of the inning on an error and Sammy Dees gave them a 5-4 lead with an RBI double down the left field line and Hannah Davies picked up the win in relief as she pitched a clean seventh. 

Davies got the ball again for game one on Saturday and dominated, allowing just four hits and two walks while striking out ight in a complete game shutout that gave the Falcons a 1-0 win. The only offense was provided by a Madi McCoy RBI rouble in the sixth that broke the scoreless streak. 

The Falcons then took game two behind an excellent effort from Harlie Vannatter who pitched a complete game giving up just one run and striking out six. Evelyn Loyola helped provide her some runs as she knocked in two and the Falcons took the contest 4-1

In the series-capper on Sunday, the Falcons and Zips played a back and forth affair that was finally settled with a walk-off double in the seventh by Dees, her second double of the day and third RBI which helped the Falcons to a 54 victory. Stepp picked up the win in relief of Davies, and gave up just one run across four innings. The Falcons are back in action next weekend with a four-game set as they travel up to Buffalo to face the Bulls.

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