Aug. 26, 2007
DeKalb, Ill. - The Northern Illinois (1-2, 0-0 MAC) volleyball team finished third at the Northern Illinois University Invitational this weekend with Sunday's win over Western Illinois (0-3, 0-0 Summit), 30-22, 30-22, 30-27.
The Huskies were able to get their first win of the year under their belt as junior Irene Johnson (Schaumberg, Ill. / Schaumberg) continued her solid tournament-play against WIU with 12 kills to give her a total of 41 kills for the weekend. Johnson's tournament effort also earned her a spot on the NIU Invitational All-Tournament Team.
"Being selected to the NIU Invitational All-Tournament Team feels good," Johnson said. "It's my first time getting selected to an All-Tournament Team. Everyone worked really hard in this tournament. We needed a win to get some confidence early in the season and it feels good to get that out of our system."
"I thought she did a good job of attacking the ball," Northern Illinois head coach Ray Gooden said. "We're hoping that she continues to make those steps because she is going to be a very solid player. She had a good weekend offensively for us."
Senior Laura Baetzel (Chicago, Ill. / Burbank Queen of Peace) had a team-high 15 kills in the win for the NIU. Junior Mandi Caputo (Chicago, Ill. / Immaculate Heart of Mary / DePaul) added a double-double with team-high 41 assists and 10 digs. Totaling a team-high 19 digs and three service aces was freshman Maddie Hughes (St. Charles, Ill. / North).
"The first match of the year was tough," Gooden said. "We have to do a better job of sustaining our play. Western Kentucky proved that they were a pretty good team. At times, we played well against them. It was good for us to get a win against Western Illinois. It was positive for us to end on a strong note."
Amy Sauerwein tallied a double-double for Western Illinois with 15 kills and 13 digs. Also adding 15 kills for the Westerwinds was Monique Houston.
Northern Illinois plays next on Tuesday, August 28 against Illinois State at 7 p.m. at home on Victor E. Court.
Listed below are the complete results from the NIU Invitational and the All-Tournament Team.
NIU Invitational Complete Results
1st Place- Western Kentucky (3-0)
2nd Place- Indiana (2-1)
3rd Place- Northern Illinois (1-2)
4th Place- Western Illinois (0-3)
Saturday, August 25:
Indiana defeats Northern Illinois 30-25, 28-30, 22-30, 30-20, 15-10
Western Kentucky defeats Western Illinois 30-19, 30-21, 30-19
Indiana defeats Western Illinois 30-15, 29-31, 35-33, 30-23
Western Kentucky defeats Northern Illinois 30-21, 30-23, 30-17
Sunday, August 26:
Western Kentucky defeats Indiana 30-23, 30-27, 30-28
Northern Illinois defeats Western Illinois 30-22, 30-22, 30-27
NIU Invitational All-Tournament Team