Wooster, Hiram Set to Co-Open NCAC Tournament on Friday

Taylor Mathews

Wittenberg Championship Website

The College of Wooster (14-14, 2-6 North Coast Athletic Conference), seeded seventh, opens up play at the 2017 NCAC Tournament against six-seeded Hiram College (18-10, 3-5 NCAC) at 3 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 3 at Springfield, Ohio. Under the new format, the winner of the first-round match advances to play third-seeded Ohio Wesleyan University (15-9, 6-2 NCAC) at 7:30 p.m. on Friday.

Media Coverage: Live stats will be available for all matches of the 2017 NCAC Tournament, links to which can be found on Wittenberg University's championship website. Additionally, Saturday's championship match will be video streamed, the link to which can also be found on Wittenberg's championship website.

Ticket Information: Tickets for adults are $7 per day, while youth and student tickets are $3. Students with a valid student ID from a NCAC institution are admitted free of charge.

New Format: The 2017 NCAC Championships have shifted to a single-elimination format. The top two seeds (Wittenberg and DePauw University) have a bye until Saturday's semifinal matches, set to take place at 11 a.m. with the two winners meeting for the tournament crown at 5 p.m. The third and fourth seeds (Ohio Wesleyan and Denison University) have a bye to the second round of the tournament. Previously, quarterfinal losers met in consolation semifinals and then advanced to the appropriate fifth- or seventh-place match. The NCAC will still hold a senior ceremony and unveil the all-conference teams at the conclusion of Friday's 3 p.m. matches.

Last Meeting – Hiram: Wooster dropped a 25-21, 18-25, 25-17, 25-16 decision at Hiram on Oct. 13. Seniors Taylor Mathews (Dover, Ohio/Dover) and Ksenia Klue (Medina, Ohio/Medina) recorded their 15th and 12th double-doubles at the time, but the Scots couldn't overcome a .202 attack percentage by the Terriers. Klue tallied a team-high 13 kills and backed that up with 18 digs while Mathews added 17 assists, and double that in the assist column. Kiara Franks paced Hiram with 16 kills.

Last Meeting – Ohio Wesleyan: Wooster logged a season-high 14 blocks on Oct. 6, but Ohio Wesleyan ultimately prevailed 25-19, 25-20, 21-25, 25-20. Wooster only had one block in the first set before heating up with four in the second frame. The Scots added four swats in the third set and upped that to five blocks in the fourth set to stay within striking distance. Wooster's 14 blocks marked the most in a match since the Scots had 18 at Denison on Oct. 19, 2016, marking the most in a single match during the current scoring era.

Well-Rounded Seniors: Mathews has logged a team-high 18 double-doubles on the year, including in five of the last six matches. In fact, Mathews enters the NCAC Tournament seventh in program history with 1,427 career assists despite only playing at Wooster for two years due to transferring in as a junior. Klue entered Wooster's top 10 in career kills earlier this season, and she's currently up to 971, a total eighth in program history. This season, Klue's amassed 318 kills, the fifth-most in a season during the current scoring era and the most by a Scot since 2012. In fact, Klue's 318 kills are the second-most in the NCAC this year.

Dig It: Junior Gabrielle Basinski, Wooster's starting libero since her first-year, surpassed 1,000 career digs earlier this year, and is up to 1,316 for her career, the sixth-most in program history. Basinski has logged six 20-dig games this year.

Serve's Up: Mathews enters the NCAC Tournament with 43 aces, and that's the fourth-most in a season in program history during the current scoring era. Last year, Mathews matched Wooster's single-match program record with seven at Kenyon College, but that total was since two-upped by first-year McKenna Gassman during the University of Akron-Wayne College earlier this year.