The women's volleyball team isn't done yet. After increasing its home-match winning streak to 40 with two wins over the weekend, the Cardinals (15-6 overall, 11-2 Mid-American Conference) look to increase that tally to 41 with a win over Miami (Ohio) tonight at 7 p.m. in Worthen Arena.
Miami is the only MAC team to ever beat the Cards in Worthen Arena. The Redhawks handed Ball State a 3-1 defeat Nov. 15, 1997. Head coach Randy Litchfield says the match is a must-win.
"Any time we're playing Miami, we look at it as a huge match," Litchfield said. "This is even a little more special because it is our last home match. There are a lot of teams in the league right now that are in must-win situations, and that's what makes this time of year so thrilling."
At 11-2, Ball State is tied with Northern Illinois for the best record in the MAC West Division, while Miami ranks second in the East at 7-4.
The Cardinals defeated the RedHawks earlier this season 3-0 in Oxford, but Litchfield said his team must still be careful, especially at this time of year. After tonight, BSU concludes its regular season with five straight road matches.
"You look for matches to build on each other," Litchfield said. "We're going in the right direction, and that's critical."
Tonight could potentially be a milestone night for senior attacker Megan Hammons. With 1,686 career MAC kills, Hammons sits just 24 shy of the all-time MAC kills record of 1,709 set by Tammy Schiller of Bowling Green over 10 years ago.
Also, the Cardinals' 40 straight home-match victories ties them with Nebraska for second most in the nation. Northern Iowa holds the best home mark with 43 straight.
A win would also give Litchfield 170 MAC career wins, making him just the second MAC coach in history to achieve such a milestone. Miami's Carolyn Condit ranks first with 183 league wins.
"I'm always highly confident," Litchfield said. "This is no exception. We have accomplished here at home what I was hoping for - get our rhythm back and regain a little swagger."