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BG Falcon Media

The BG News
BG24 Newscast
November 30, 2023

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Van De Walle wins No. 400

If the Bowling Green volleyball team wasn’t rubbing it in during the first two games in which they outscored Chicago State 60-40 Friday night, then they were certainly pouring it on by completing the sweep with a convincing 30-7 win.

The victory gave BGSU coach Denise Van De Walle her 400th career victory.

“It felt great,” Van De Walle said after the game. “I was so happy with game three. Scores like a 30-7 don’t come around everyday. I thought that our offense was outstanding in game three and our serving really put a lot of pressure on Chicago State. They just folded, and we just kept hitting better, and better and better.”

The milestone win added to Van De Walle’s impressive resume, which includes the most victories by a volleyball coach in Mid-American Conference history.

Van De Walle said she knew the team wanted the win not for the milestone, but to make up for the record they compiled at the Illinois-Chicago Invitational two weekends ago.

All anyone could talk about following the game, however, was how excited they were to get the win for “Coach.”

“We all knew how happy it would be if we did win, because it was coach’s 400th win,” said sophomore Madeline Means. “So we really just wanted to play for her, to do all the things we needed to do, focus on our side of the night and everything just fell into place.”

Following the game, Van De Walle was drenched by a Gatorade bucket full of water and a bucket full of confetti.

Senior Ashlei Nofzinger, a second-year transfer from Loyola-Chicago, said it was exciting preparing the celebration.

“We had all these fun little things planned and being the one who dumped the bucket of water on her was pretty fun.”

Van De Walle felt the same.

“I love to have fun with the team,” she said. “So being drenched with the water cooler was fun for me, and I know they liked doing it.”

Assistant coach Sean Huiet, who has been on the sideline for milestone wins 300, 350 and 400, said it was the best celebration of the three.

Means said Van De Walle has meant everything to the volleyball program.

“She really wants everybody to be the best player they can be,” she said. “Day in and day out, she wants you to get better and that’s what she really strives for, making sure we work hard. It’s not always about winning. It’s about reaching for your full potential.”

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