By Chris Schmidbauer, Sports Information Director
Toledo, OH -- In 2019, the Owens Volleyball program will have seven alumni playing at NAIA schools. Michaela Eisenhauer, Kennedy Ames, and Niki Polce will all suit up for the Lourdes University Grey Wolves, while Devon Heitkamp, Olivia Hermiller, and Erika Angstmann will play for the University of Northwest Ohio (UNOH) Racers. Carrigan Gray will play her senior season with Siena Heights.
Polce, Hermiller, Heitkamp, Gray and Angstmann all were sophomores on the 2017 National Runner-Up team, while Ames and Eisenhauer were sophomores on last year's National Championship team.
Heitkamp has a very productive first season as a member of the UNOH Racers. She finished first on the team in kills with 539 and kills per set with 4.1. The senior's season was good enough to earn her a spot as an All-American Honorable Mention and a place on the Wolverine-Hoosier All Conference First Team. Heitkamp's .273 kill percentage was second best on the team as well.
Angstmann was a key contributor for the Racers during her junior season. She finished second on the team in kills with 370 total and her 2.8 kills per set. She also finished the season with 30 service aces. That mark was good enough to place her fifth on the team. Angstmann was named to the WHAC's All-Conference Second Team.
Hermiller participated in 35 matches a year ago for the Racers and she finished with 288 kills total for the season. The number was fourth best for the program last year. Her 2.2 kills per set was also fourth best on the team.
Polce played in all 26 matches as a junior for the Gray Wolves. She was a Second Team All Wolverine-Hoosier Athletic Conference selection, and she tallied a team-leading 444 digs (4.40/set). She also garnered 82 assists and recorded double figure digs in every match.
Gray appeared in 31 matches and made 104 kills during her junior campaign. Her 841 assists were the team-high. She also had 241 digs and contributed 32 block assists. Gray had the team's third-highest serving percentage as well.
Eisenhauer will begin her first season with the Grey Wolves in 2019. A year ago, she had a dominant season, leading the Express in kills, kills per set. points, and point per set. She also placed second on the team in digs and digs per set. Eisenhauer's numbers ranked her third in the country in total kills for the year and she ranked 26th nationally in kills per set. She was named the NJCAA Division III National Player of the Year in 2018.
Ames will join Eisenhauer at Lourdes this season as well. Last season, Ames finished third on the team in kills with 290 and 1.92 kills per set. She also had 34 service aces and finished third on the team in digs with 346. Ames was named to the NJCAA Division III All-Tournament team. She had 26 kills total over three tournament matches.
Lourdes and UNOH were both picked to finish fourth in the WHAC this season, while Siena Heights was picked to finish eighth. UNOH begins their season on August 23 while the Grey Wolves start their 2019 campaign on August 29.
(Story was updated to add Carrigan Gray to list of players)