McKendree volleyball, soccer teams face major road tests

The McKendree University women’s volleyball team is set to begin a five game road trip with a pair of Great Lakes Valley Conference matches this weekend. The Bearcats travel to Rensselaer, Ind., on Friday to take on the Pumas of Saint Joseph’s College at 7 p.m. before a Saturday afternoon match against the University of Indianapolis at 3 p.m.

McKendree will look to extend its current three match win streak and take over the top spot in the East Division of the GLVC. The Bearcats are currently 11-5 overall and 6-1 in the GLVC, sitting just one game back of Lewis University.

Sophomore outside hitter Arela Williams leads McKendree with 178 and 197 digs, averaging 3.12 kill and 3.46 digs per set. Junior middle hitter Sophie Fairman is second on the team with 144 kills and has a team high 65 blocks averaging 1.18 per set, good enough for fifth in the GLVC. Junior setter Aubry Dickmann leads the Bearcats with 347 assists to pair with 110 digs, while freshman setter Morgan Melchert has 273 assists of her own along with 116 digs.

Other Bearcats to watch for include junior outside hitter Allison Schneider who has put in back-to-back double digit kill performances for McKendree. Schneider has totaled 117 kills and put up 116 digs for the Bearcats. Senior middle hitter Lauren Apetz has tallied 79 kills averaging 2.26 per set, sophomore middle blocker Carissa Lorenz is second on the team with 34 blocks, and junior libero Breanna Howe has 168 digs averaging over three per set for McKendree.

Women’s wrestling

The McKendree University women’s wrestling team will begin their season this weekend in Williamsburg, Ky., at the Patriot Duals hosted by University of the Cumberlands. The Bearcats finished in sixth place at the Women’s Collegiate Wrestling Association National Championship last season, and return six of their seven All-Americans from last season.

Men’s and women’s tennis

The McKendree University men’s and women’s tennis teams closed out the fall nonchampionship portion of their seasons last weekend and are off to fast starts. The women’s program is currently 4-0, while the men’s program is 3-1 on the season. The women will return to the courts on Feb. 6 against Washburn University, while the men will return to action on Feb. 7 in a nonconference match at Drury University.

Men’s and women’s soccer

The men’s and women’s soccer teams will hit the road this weekend for conference matches on Friday and Sunday at Saint Joseph’s College and University of Indianapolis. The women are currently in eighth place in the GLVC with an overall record of 5-4-2 with a 4-3-1 mark in the GLVC. The men are in 10th place with a 4-5 overall record and a 4-4 mark in the GLVC. Both teams will return home to Leemon Field next weekend with home games against University of Missouri-St. Louis next Friday, before hosting Maryville University on Sunday.


McKendree University softball head coach Ashley Fleming announced Tuesday that her program will be conducting an Elite Softball Camp at the end of October.

The camp will be October 30-31 at the campus softball field and is open to players in grades 7-12 at a price of $40/session. The camp will include sessions that provide advanced instruction and drills in hitting, pitching, infield, outfield, and catching. The camp sessions are limited in size, providing individualized instruction. Camp staff will include the McKendree coaching staff and student-athletes.

On Friday, October 30, there will be a pitching session from 6-7:30 p.m., followed by a hitting session from 7:45-9:15 p.m. On Saturday, Oct. 31, there will be an infield session from 9:30-11 a.m., followed by a hitting session from11:15 a.m.-12:45 p.m. A catching or outfield session will be conducted from1:30-3 p.m., followed by a pitching session from 3:15-4:45 p.m., and a hitting session at 5-6:30 p.m.

Pitching sessions are limited to 10 campers each, while all other sessions are limited to 15 campers each. To sign up or for more information, please visit If you have questions, contact head coach Ashley Fleming at 618-537-6908.

Men’s and women’s basketball

The McKendree University men’s and women’s basketball teams will take to the court for the first time in 2015-16 at 12:01 a.m. Oct. 15 for the annual Midnight Madness at the Harry M. Statham Sports Center.

Both teams will be introduced to the crowd shortly after the 12:01 a.m.entrance. After that, fans will have a chance to win prizes through on-court participation and skills competitions. The Bearcat basketball programs will have their first workout of the new season in front of the fans, which will include a short scrimmage for the men’s team.

Harry Statham will enter his 50th season as the head coach for the McKendree men’s basketball program. Statham is the all-time wins leader in men’s college basketball history with 1,088 victories and is one of just four collegiate men’s coaches who have earned more than 1,000 career wins. For the women’s team, Kari Kerkhoff will begin her first season at the helm of the Bearcats’ program. Kerkhoff was hired last spring after spending the previous three seasons as the associate head coach and recruiting coordinator at NCAA Division I Southern Illinois University Edwardsville.

The Midnight Madness event is free and open to the public. For more information about Midnight Madness, please contact Ashlyn Beasley at 618-537-6418.