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Last updated: Sat. Apr. 19, 2014 - 04:03 am EDT

IPFW hoping improvement helps against Buckeyes

Volleydons tangle with Ohio State in MIVA Tournament

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As a reward for finishing fourth in the Midwest Intercollegiate Volleyball Association, the IPFW men's volleyball team gets to go head-to-head with an opponent which has already twice pushed them to five games.

``We'll either live to play another day or we'll be done,'' IPFW coach Arnie Ball said. ``Now it's a matter who gets a little lucky here at the end.''

The No. 14-ranked Volleydons will host Ohio State at 7 p.m. with a spot in the MIVA semifinals on the line. As hard as it is to beat a team three times in a season, Ball believes it's almost guaranteed the match will last another five games.

The two benefits for IPFW will be the home crowd and the improvement Ball believes his team has made over the last month. That allowed them to survive a match with the Buckeyes on April 4. He points to the development of sophomore opposite Andy Sellan and junior setter Omar Rivera, especially.

Sellan has become IPFW's most consistent hitter.

``He still gets so frustrated with his sophomore errors, but we keep telling him to keep playing hard,'' Ball said. ``He's probably our most consistent player all year. The thing that's been good in Andy's case, is when he makes an error he rebounds right back. That's the whole key.''

Rivera has done a better job with his setting and his defensive play, Ball said.

``His choices are better, his setting is better,'' Ball said. ``He's just done some things to become a better volleyball player. It helps when we pass the ball.''

The winner of the match will likely face No. 1-ranked Loyola in Chicago on April 23 in the semifinals.

bsebring@news-sentinel.com


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