Panthers to close regular season with triad of conference contests


Written by Sports Information Student Assistant, Jake Sipes-Salter

HANOVER, Ind. -- The Hanover volleyball team will look to finish its regular season and conference slates with a statement this week.

The Panthers will begin their weekly schedule by traveling to face Franklin at 7 p.m., Wednesday, Oct. 24, before wrapping up the regular season inside Collier Arena with a pair of matches this weekend. Hanover will host Anderson at 1 p.m., Saturday, Oct. 27, followed by a contest against Manchester at 1 p.m., Sunday, Oct. 28.

KILLER KELSEY: Freshman Kelsey Ketcham (Mishawaka, Ind.) has been consistently active in multiple phases of the game, as she leads the NCAA with 10 triple-doubles. Even when Ketcham isn't having triple-double nights she constantly contributes, as she has at least a double-double in four of her last five outings. For the year, her 234 kills rank first for the squad, sitting just three kills outside the top 10 of the Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference. Additionally, her 395 assists and 269 digs are second and third on the team, respectively.

DASTARDLY DENNIS: Senior Claire Dennis (Bloomington, Ind.) has been hot the last three games, particularly in the kill category. Dennis has 29 kills over her last three showings, including a season-high 14 kills, to go along with seven blocks in the Panthers' most recent win against Earlham. She followed it up with an eight-kill, nine-block performance against the DePauw Tigers.

With her totals, Dennis has helped propel both herself and the Blue and Red to the top of statistic sheets in the blocks category. Her 1.23 blocks per set ranks seventh in NCAA Division III, while her 117 total stuffs rank second in the nation. As a whole, Hanover ranks eighth in blocks per set (2.24) and fourth in total blocks, posting 215.0 rejections.

ALLY DIGS HEELS IN: Junior Ally Williams (Fountaintown, Ind.) continues to be a backstop for the Panthers, as she has posted a league-leading 513 digs, including 55 in her last two outings. In the Blue and Red's outing against Rose-Hulman, Williams posted 31 digs, which is her third-highest single match total on the 2018 campaign. Williams also has the third-highest digs per set mark in the HCAC at a 5.34 clip. Nationally, her total digs are 23rd while her digs per set numbers are 50th. As a team, Hanover ranks 41st in the country with 1,726 total digs.

HOT PERFORMERS: Sophomore Blaise Chaney (Mason, Ohio) has 20 combined kills in her last two matches, including 11 against DePauw, making it six double-digit totals on the year. Senior Abby Crump (Indianapolis, Ind.) has assisted the cause heavily, as she has 23 consecutive double-digit assist games, with her lone single-digit performance being a nine-dime total against Capital (Ohio).

SCOUTING FRANKLIN: The Franklin Grizzlies currently hold a 10-15 overall record that includes a 3-4 standing in conference action. Coming off of a 3-1 win over Bluffton, the Grizzlies have won two of their last three against HCAC foes. While having won three of their last four home matches may seem daunting, the Panthers have won seven straight overall over Franklin, dating back to 2013.

SCOUTING ANDERSON: The Anderson Ravens are 10-15 on their season including a 2-5 mark in league play, with a contest against Defiance before their trek to Hanover. Among their HCAC action was a loss to rival Earlham, who the Blue and Red were able to defeat 3-1 in their head-to-head last week. Hanover has eight straight wins over the Ravens dating back to 2011, including four consecutive matches that have been decided in straight sets.

SCOUTING MANCHESTER: The Manchester Spartans sit at 6-16 this year that includes a 2-4 slate in the HCAC with games against Bluffton and Transylvania before traveling to Collier Arena. Senior Haley Duncan has given the Spartans life, as she sits in second-place in the conference in kills per set at a 3.49 clip. The Panthers have won at least 15 straight matches against the Spartans, dating back to the conference's online results to 2004.

Contact: Tyler Jester