Volleyball season ends on a low note with 3-0 loss to West Virginia

Bryna Vogel, senior opposite hitter, prepares to serve the ball during the volleyball game against Arkansas at Ahearn Field House in Manhattan, Kan. on Aug. 31, 2017. (File photo by Nathan Jones | Collegian Media Group)

The K-State volleyball season did not end as planned Wednesday night when the Wildcats suffered a 3-0 loss to West Virginia University at home in Ahearn Field House.

Head coach Suzie Fritz said she was not happy about losing the last game of the season.

“It’s a very disappointing way to end the season,” Fritz said to K-State Sports.

The 2017 volleyball season fell short of expectations for the Wildcats, who finished 10-19 overall and 3-13 in Big 12 conference play. Last year, K-State went to the round of 32 in the NCAA Women’s Volleyball Championship.

K-State volleyball also said goodbye to its lone senior Wednesday night. Senior opposite Bryna Vogel has played a big part in the team’s success over the past four years. Vogel did not play in the game due to an injury, but senior night was still very sentimental for the senior from Clearwater, Kansas.

“In my mind, [Vogel’s] a tremendous success story,” Fritz said to K-State Sports. “She has more inside of her than maybe any player I’ve ever coached. She’s tenacious and she’s extremely competitive. She’s like a ninja and a nun all rolled into one. She’s a really dynamic and extraordinary human being.”

There were some bright spots for the Wildcats this season, including junior outside hitters Alyssa Schultejans and Kylee Zumach. These two players had 14 kills each in their last match of the season.

“I thought the left sides, both Kylee and Alyssa, were good early,” Fritz said to K-State Sports. “I thought Kylee Zumach was really good — .500 on 28 swings. She was trying to hold us together, and we couldn’t have asked her to do any more tonight. She was playing hard and competing hard.”

When it comes to assists, sophomore setter Sarah Dixon led the Wildcats with 20, while freshman setter Brooke Smith was second on the team with 17.

For the season, Zumach led the team in kills this year with an even 350 total. Second was Vogel, who ended with 241 kills. Schultejans had 203 kills this year.

Zumach and Smith were also very good when it came to serves this season — the two led the team in service aces with 30 and 27, respectively. Zumach, Dixon and junior libero Reilly Killeen all led the Wildcats in sets played, with each of them playing in 116 sets this season.

K-State will now turn its attention to next volleyball season, where a more experienced team will try to get back to the NCAA Women’s Volleyball Championship.