From OCU Sports
Rich Tortorelli, Assistant Athletic Director for Communications
PLAINVIEW, Texas – Oklahoma City University collected the Sooner Athletic Conference volleyball tournament championship with a 26-24, 25-20, 25-19 victory over Wayland Baptist (Texas) on Saturday at the Hutcherson Center.
The Stars won their second SAC volleyball tournament title after taking the 2010 crown. Oklahoma City (30-3) reached 30 wins for the first time since 2008 and will play in the NAIA Championships for the first time since 2010.
OCU earned its second NAIA Championships bid in program history by capturing the SAC regular-season title. The 12th-ranked Stars are expected to be among the 20 teams who will gain byes into the NAIA Championships on Nov. 29-Dec. 3 in Sioux City, Iowa. The next 24 teams comprising the national-tournament field will play in the NAIA Championship Opening Round on Nov. 19 on campus sites.
The national-tournament field will be announced 10 a.m. CST Monday. Watch the announcement here.
“I’m really proud of my team finishing a goal,” OCU coach Kyle Steele said. “We got some great playing time out of Michelle Krenowicz as a freshman setter in a big-time match. Wayland had a player out injured, but we knew they would play hard anyway. It took some time, but eventually, we looked like OCU and finished the job. We are looking forward to preparing for Sioux City.”
OCU’s Manon Soraru became the SAC Tournament most valuable player, while Dani Chase took all-tournament. Soraru, a junior from Mulhouse, France, posted 12 kills and two blocks in the title match and 4.70 kills and 0.90 blocks per set during the tournament. Chase, a junior from Yukon, Okla., supplied the Stars with 10 digs Saturday and 4.40 digs and 0.30 aces a set throughout the tournament.
Fia Faa’agi, a sophomore from Murrieta, Calif., recorded 12 kills and five digs, and Shekinah Clarke, a sophomore from Waianae, Hawaii, turned in 10 kills and nine digs for the Stars.
OCU’s Sanja Vojnovic, a junior from Bajeljena, Bosnia, accumulated 29 assists and three kills, while Krenowicz, a freshman from Frisco, Texas, amassed 15 assists and two blocks. Marijana Bjelobrk, a freshman from Belgrade, Serbia, added nine kills and five digs, and Holly Randall, a junior from Edmond, Okla., contributed six kills and five blocks for Oklahoma City.
In the first set, OCU came back from a 22-21 deficit. Bjelobrk and Soraru smacked kills to rally the Stars. After Alex Woods’ kill tied the set 24-24, Faa’agi put away the set by nailing two kills.
OCU trailed 18-17 in the second set before rolling to five consecutive points. Soraru and Vojnovic combined on a block to tie the match. Vojnovic, Faa’agi, Randall and Bjelobrk followed with kills for the Stars.
Sooner Athletic Conference Tournament
John Brown def. St. Gregory’s, 3-0 (25-14, 25-20, 25-16)
Oklahoma City def. Mid-America Christian, 3-0 (25-22, 25-12, 25-17)
Texas Wesleyan def. Southwestern Christian, 3-1 (25-12, 18-25, 25-15, 25-14)
Wayland Baptist def. Southwestern Assemblies of God, 3-1 (25-18, 24-26, 26-24, 25-12)
Oklahoma City def. John Brown, 3-1 (25-12, 21-25, 25-23, 25-21)
Wayland Baptist def. Texas Wesleyan, 3-2 (25-19, 25-16, 23-25, 20-25, 17-15)
Oklahoma City def. Wayland Baptist, 3-0 (26-24, 25-20, 25-19)
Dani Chase, Oklahoma City; Rossanna Ramos, Wayland Baptist; Megan Sharratt, Wayland Baptist; Shelby Stinnett, Texas Wesleyan; Jessica Meyer, John Brown.
Most valuable player: Manon Soraru, Oklahoma City.