Ndavazocheva leads No. 12/10 Ball State past No. 14 Lewis

Photo courtesy of Ball State athletics

There wasn’t much doubt who No. 12/10 Ball State was setting in the decisive fifth game – and outside attacker Tinaishe Ndavazocheva still came through with kills.

Ndavazocheva led all players with seven kills and zero errors on a .538 attack percentage in the final game as Ball State defeated No. 14 Lewis 19-25, 25-22, 25-21, 26-28, 15-13 on Thursday in Romeoville, Illinois.

Ndavazocheva closed out the match with three kills on Ball State’s final five points, including having the match-winning kill. The outside attack also was set all but seven of Ball State’s attack attempts in the fifth game to help the Cardinals move within one match of securing a share of the MIVA regular season title.

Along with the performance in the fifth game, Ndavazocheva ended the opener of the two-match series with a match-high 23 kills on a .320 attack percentage.

Ndavazocheva was one of two Ball State players with double-digit kills against Lewis. Middle attacker Rodney Wallace added 10 kills on a .389 attack percentage.


Wallace also led all players with eight blocks in the victory.

Ball State for the second consecutive match was without starting outside attacker Patrick Rogers. Rogers, who suffered an injury in Ball State’s loss to No. 9/9 Ohio State last week, is eighth in the nation with a 3.91 kills per game average.

Lewis despite the loss out-hit Ball State .289 to .233 and had a .316 attack percentage in the final game – more than .050 percentage points better than the Cardinals.

Ball State almost avoided a fifth game and won the match in the fourth game.

The Cardinals led 24-23 when the officials initially called a kill off a Lewis touch to end the match. Coach Dan Friend successfully challenged the play to get the call overturned and Lewis won in overtime to force a fifth game.

Lewis outside attacker Max Roquet finished with a team-high 21 kills. Outside attacker Syver Drolsum contributed 13 kills, while middle attacker Shawn Baggs had eight kills and zero errors on a team-best .571 attack percentage.

John Davis coming off the bench led all players with five aces.

Lewis, though, committed 20 service errors in the loss – 14 more service errors than Ball State.