Manhattan Christian College’s volleyball team advanced through the consolation side of the bracket to win the NCCAA Division II Central Region tournament over the weekend.
The Crusader’s slipped against Grace University in four sets in the second match of the tournament, forcing them to play their way back to the championship through the consolation bracket in the double-elimination format.
They beat third-seeded Central Christian College of the Bible 25-7, 25-16, 25-16 to advance to the championship match, but would need to beat Grace, which hadn’t lost in the tournament, twice to take the championship.
In the first championship match, Manhattan went back and forth with Grace, eventually winning in five sets 25-21, 22-25, 26-24, 18-25, 15-13 to force a final match for the title.
This time, MCC cruised, winning 25-19, 25-17, 25-11 to advance to nationals.
Kylie Rupe was named Central Region most valuable player, with Alyssa Strain and Paige Mortensen being named first-team all-region, and Kayla Hawkins making second-team. Coach Lauren Sanders was named Central Region coach of the year.