DODGE CITY, Kan. — Butler volleyball head coach Rick Younger reached 300 career wins over the weekend as the Grizzlies picked up four wins at the two-day Dodge City Invitational.
Butler (11-5 overall, 3-2 conference) needed five sets to defeat host Dodge City on Friday, then the Grizzlies beat Independence in four sets to give Younger his 300th win as Butler's head coach. On Saturday, the Grizzlies recorded consecutive sweeps over Allen County aand Labette to go undefeated on the weekend.
Against Dodge City, Butler won the match 22-25, 25-12, 25-22, 22-25, 15-9 as five Grizzlies reached double figures in kills. Butler hit .274 with 68 kills on 61 assists, five aces, 57 digs and 14 blocks. Claudia Hess led the Grizzlies with 15 kills, hitting .375 and had three blocks, while Aliyah Bernard had 12 kills with a .303 hitting clip and four blocks. Brooke Fender, Jordyn Allen and Alli Klausmeyer each had 10 kills, while Nicole Klusener had nine kills. Andie Nibarger had a big day at setter with 32 assists, two kills, an ace and eight digs. Alex Stiles also finished with 23 assists and an ace, while Abby Goodrum had 18 digs in the win.
Butler then needed four sets to beat Independence (25-15, 25-10, 22-25, 25-10) as the Grizzlies hit .308 with 49 kills on 40 assists in the match. Bernard led the Grizzlies with 13 kills and four blocks while adding an ace. Fender finished with 11 kills and hit .500, while Klusener added 15 kills and an ace. Goodrun had a game-high 15 digs and three aces, with Nibarger leading the team with 24 assists.
Butler set the tone early with a 21-point opening set over Allen on Saturday, winning the match 25-4, 25-10, 25-23. The Grizzlies emptied the bench as the stats were spread out over a number of players. Hess led Butler with eight kills, hit .538 and had one block, while Klusener finished with six kills. Allen, Savannah Espinosa, Fender, Klausmeyer and Hanna Stuewe each had two kills. Stiles had a team-high 13 assists and added two aces, while Goodrum had 12 digs. In addition to two kills, Fender had five aces in the win. Butler hit just .198 with 30 kills, 16 aces, 33 digs and five blocks.
The Grizzlies ended the invitational with a 25-18, 25-10, 25-19 win over Labette, as Klusener had a solid double-double with 11 kills and 14 digs. Fender finished with 10 kills and nine digs, while Goodrum had 14 digs. Nibarger led the Grizzlies with 15 assists and added two kills and two aces. Stiles added 14 assists and nine digs.
Butler will next host Friends University JV on Monday in a 6:30 p.m. match at the Power Plant.