Missouri State extended its winning streak to five matches and claimed the Dr. Mary Jo Wynn Invitational title Saturday with victories over Western Illinois and IUPUI at Hammons Student Center.
MSU's Lynsey Wright earned MVP honors and was joined by Lily Johnson and Simone House on the all-tournament team as the Bears moved their record to 7-3 on the season. Also on the all-tournament squad were Taylor Sandbothe and Valeria Leon of Ohio State, Green Bay's Lydia DeWeese and IUPUI's Jessica Helms.
The Bears continue their challenging non-conference schedule on Tuesday with a 6 p.m. match at Arkansas State.
Western Illinois Recap (Won 25-9, 25-15, 25-18)
Missouri State used 16 players in an afternoon sweep of Western Illinois (0-10), out-hitting the Leathernecks .345-.022 and serving nine aces.
MacKenzie Irwin set career highs with six kills and three blocks, Caroline Finnell had a career-high three kills, and Johnson and Gerri Idos served three aces apiece. Johnson led all players with 12 kills, passing Mindy Struckhoff, Katie Werges and Erin O'Connor to move into eighth place on MSU's career kills list.
The Bears jumped ahead 17-2 in the first set in an easy win, and never trailed in the second period in another double-digit victory. The third set was tied eight times to a 10-10 deadlock before MSU used a 5-1 run to lead 15-11 on an Irwin kill. Wright added three kills during a 4-0 run to a 20-13 lead as the Bears pulled away.
IUPUI Recap (Won 25-14, 25-23, 18-25, 25-20)
Sophomore Cambree Villarreal set career highs with 13 kills and five digs, and Johnson (20), Wright (12) and House (10) all produced double-figure kill efforts to help the Bears to the tournament championship.
Missouri State produced 17 kills before their first attack error in the first set and hit .400 with 21 kills in the period, led by Wright landing seven on nine swings without an error.
The Jaguars built early leads in each of the next two sets, but only held on in the third as the Bears overcame a 20-13 deficit in the second period. House and Daniele Messa combined for a block to end an 8-0 run with a 21-20 advantage, and MSU capitalized on two IUPUI errors after a 23-all tie for the win.
IUPUI used a 7-1 run to lead 17-12 in the third, and kept the margin at three points or better for the remainder of the set. Missouri State then jumped ahead 11-5 in the fourth on a Wright ace, but the Jags fired back to tie the score at 15 and 18. Johnson countered the second IUPUI rally with three kills during a 5-0 run that was punctuated by House's solo block for a 23-18 advantage. House then fired kills for MSU's final two points.