On Feb. 17, No. 12-ranked Ball State took down No. 8 Loyola 3-1 at Worthen Arena and will turn around to play No. 14 Lewis University on Feb. 18. 

The Cardinals remain the only Midwestern Intercollegiate Volleyball Association team without a loss with a 4-0 conference record.

While the Cardinals were able to get the first two sets against the Ramblers, they lost the third and played a tight fourth set on the way to victory.

“At halftime, [head coach Joel Walton] sent us the message of staying focused,” senior setter Hiago Garchet said.

Focus will be the overall message moving forward as Ball State will take on a Lewis — the team that met Loyola in the NCAA championship last season.

“We approach every season with a new slate, but after tonight, and knowing that Lewis lost a lot of players, I think we might have the upper hand,” junior outside attacker Mike Scannell said.

Lewis lost nine of its seniors from graduation last season, so the Flyers will boast a much different lineup from last year, when they swept the Cardinals on two separate occasions. 

“Last year, Lewis disabled our team with their serve. We couldn’t get a good pass to run the offense; we ended up rocking on our back heels,” Walton said.

With freshman libero Adam Wessel starting off the season strong, the Cardinals will have a fresh start receiving Lewis' serves. In the match against Loyola, Wessel posted 18 digs, a .966 passing percentage and received the serve 28 times.

Ball State plays its fourth consecutive match at 7:30 p.m. Feb. 18 against the Lewis Flyers in Worthen Arena.