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Volleyball wins 500th conference game

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NORTH NEWTON, KAN. – The Bethel College volleyball team passed an important milestone in a conference match against McPherson College Oct. 11.

The Threshers won their 500th game in the Kansas Collegiate Athletic Conference, in which Bethel has been competing since 1975, when the KCAC began recognizing volleyball as a varsity sport.

In the Oct. 11 match, Bethel beat McPherson three games to one. Bethany Thiesen, senior from Moundridge, led in kills with 19 and a .425 attack average. Morgan Peters, senior from Henderson, Neb., and Alyssa Schrag, junior from Moundridge, were tops in assists with 23 and 20, respectively. Three players recorded double-digit digs: Melissa Volk, junior from Newton, 15; Addison Wolf, junior from Moundridge, 14; and Whitney Hiebner, senior from Hampton, Neb., 13.

The victory put Bethel in second place in the KCAC, at 9-1 (18-8 overall).

In the KCAC’s 35-year history, the Threshers have averaged 14 conference wins a year, with a record of 500-127 in the KCAC and 943-502 overall. They rank seventh in the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) in all-time total wins.

Coaches in the Bethel volleyball program have been Barb Anderson Graber, 1973-77, a 2006 Bethel College Athletic Hall of Fame inductee (a record of 102-37 overall, 54-11 KCAC); current Bethel Athletic Director Diane Sanders Flickner, 1978-88 (402-145 overall, 169-21 KCAC); Elizabeth Young Jarnigan, 1989-93 (84-103 overall, 50-36 KCAC); Bev Mayer, 1994-2005 (252-162 overall, 161-43 KCAC); and Chad Schilling, 2006-present (87-45 overall, 57-15 conference).

“What a great accomplishment for the Bethel College volleyball program,” Schilling said. “This adds to the rich tradition of winning that has been established by previous teams and coaches and continued by the 2010 team. It is indeed an honor to not only be a part of this milestone but also a part of Bethel College volleyball.”

Bethel College is the only private, liberal arts college in Kansas listed in the 2010-11 analysis of top colleges and universities in the United States and is in the first tier in its category in the U.S. News & World Report annual ranking of “America’s Top Colleges” for 2011. The four-year liberal arts college is affiliated with Mennonite Church USA. For more information, see

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