No. 13 Ball State ends No. 10 Loyola comeback bid, wins in five games

Photo courtesy of Ball State athletics

Freshman setter Lucas Machado after being pulled midway through the fourth game came back in full force for the decisive game.

Machado in the fifth game guided the offense to a match-best .529 attack percentage and had a game-high two blocks as No. 13 Ball State defeated No. 10 Loyola 25-16, 25-23, 22-25, 22-25, 15-11 on Saturday in Chicago.

Ball State out-hit Loyola .304 to .257 to complete the regular season series sweep in front of a road crowd of 856 people. The Cardinals (11-7, 4-1 MIVA) also rebounded from having less than a .200 attack percentage both in the third and fourth game losses and committed a match-low one attack error in the fifth game.

Three Ball State players finished with double-digit kills against the Ramblers (8-7, 3-2 MIVA).


Outside attacker Patrick Rogers led all players with 18 kills on a .302 attack percentage. In addition, Rogers had a kill with Ball State trailing 23-20 in the second game that jump started a 5-0 run to close out the game.

Outside attacker Tinaishe Ndavazocheva contributed 17 kills, while opposite Braydon Savitski-Lynde added 11 kills.

Savitski-Lynde also had five blocks to help Ball State out-block Loyola 13 to. 10.5.

Middle attacker Rodney Wallace ended with a match-high seven blocks, including having two blocks in the final game. Wallace teamed up with Machado for blocks on back-to-back plays during a 3-0 run midway through the fifth game that gave the Cardinals a lead they would not relinquish.

Opposite Parker Van Buren in the loss had a team-high 13 kills. Van Buren was the only Rambler to finish with double-digit kills.

Coach John Hawks pulled four starters at the beginning of the third game after Loyola blew a late-game three-point lead in the second game to drop into a two-game deficit. Middle attacker Nicodemus Meyer was the only Loyola player to play in all five games.

Ball State with this victory extends its winning streak to three games and moves into a three-way tie for first place in the MIVA.

Loyola drops into fourth place in the MIVA and is now a match back behind the three teams in first place – Ball State, McKendree and No. 8/7 Ohio State.