WALLA WALLA, Wash. – Tournament MVP Maddye Dinsmore led Whitworth to the title of the Whit Classic volleyball tournament on Saturday as the Pirates swept to victory in their final two matches to finish the event 4-0.
Whitworth improved to 7-2 this season with 3-0 wins over Whitman and Mills on Saturday. Dinsmore, the Bucs' junior setter, finished the tournament with 131 assists, 36 digs, 15 kills and seven aces to earn MVP honors. Nicole Leonard and Brenna Bruil were also named to the All-Tournament team.
Fellow NWC member Lewis & Clark went 3-1 at the Whit Classic to claim second place.
Bruil had 13 kills and hit .360 while Leonard added 10 kills in the 25-13, 29-27, 25-15 win over host Whitman in the early match. Dinsmore dished 35 assists and had a pair of aces. Elizabeth Ginley led the defense with 14 digs.
The only drama came in the second set when Whitworth pulled out the narrow win. With the set tied 27-27, Haley Vick and Karina Lees combined on a key block. Then Ginley served an ace for the winner. Whitworth controlled the first and third sets from the start.
"In the first set against Whitman we passed well and we're able to get all of our hitters involved," said Whitworth coach Kati Bodecker. "We did a great job of controlling our first contacts and kept in system."
The Pirates had little trouble with winless Mills College in their tournament finale, taking a 25-7, 25-15, 25-15 victory. Every player on the roster appeared in the match and the Pirate starters only played in the opening set. Taylor Wicht led Whitworth with seven kills as the Bucs hit a season-high .338 at the net. Bruil served six aces, all in the opening set.
"Everyone contributed against Mills and it was fun to watch our freshman get some game experience," Bodecker said.
Whitworth takes its seven match winning streak into a break in play. The Pirates will not return to action until September 19th when they open Northwest Conference play against defending NWC champion Pacific Lutheran.